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Lobbyist Money Help  

Top State Republicans Say Their Breakfast Club is Business as Usual

February 1, 2006
By: Travis Thompson
State Capital Bureau

Top Missouri Republican lawmakers are recruiting members for a new breakfast club in Jefferson City.

It's pay to play and Democrats demand a stop to the plan.

Travis Thompson has more from the state Capitol.

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Fourteen state Republican Senate committee chairss plan to host a series of breakfasts at the Jefferson City Country Club in February and March.

They're touting the events as a chance for lobbyists to talk about important issues with state senators.

The cost to get in to one breakfast?

One thousand bucks.

Still, President Pro Tem Michael Gibbons says the breakfasts are completely ethical.

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Contents: "We play by the rules here. We follow the law, we maintain it. We follow the ethics rules out of this office everyday."

Several breakfast hosts refused to discuss the fundraiser.

Democrats compared the fundraiser to the Abramoff and DeLay scandals in Washington.

The money raised by the events will go to the Senate Majority Fund to help re-elect Republicans.

From the state Capitol, I'm Travis Thompson.

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State Republican big wigs break ground on a new breakfast club.

Lobbyists are welcome, but only for a hefty fine.

Travis Thompson has more from the state Capitol.

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One thousand bucks.

That's what it'll cost lobbyists to attend one of 14 breakfasts at the Jefferson City Country Club.

State Senate committee chairs are hosting the events this month and next.

The leaders are touting the events as a way for lobbyists to discuss important issues with senators.

The money raised goes to help re-elect state Republicans.

President Pro Tem Michael Gibbons says the fundraiser is completely ethical.

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Contents: "I think this is very consistent with what both political parties do on a regular basis. We don't have publicly financed elections. They're financed by donors who contribute."

Still, Democrats compared the fundraiser to the Abramoff and DeLay scandals in Washington.

Several lawmakers who plan to host a breakfast refused to discuss the fundraiser.

From the state Capitol, I'm Travis Thompson.