By: James Moseman, Gettysburg
Tuesday morning was off to a great start as all Boys’ State citizens went our separate ways following the flag raising. Those in attendance at the Lobbying and Political Action Committees session were fortunate enough to hear from current lobbyist and past State Senator John Lindsay.
Mr. Lindsay started off by explaining the importance of lobbyists, and went through an activity that showed us just who lobbyists represent. As I’m sure was surprising for a few of us, they represent everyone! Often we think of oil companies and groups such as AARP in relation to lobbyists. However, Mr. Lindsey explained that this is not always the case, as they represent everyone from nurses, to truck drivers, to government employees and almost every other profession.
Mr. Lindsay then explained the process of making a bill a law, and what is involved in the politics of the legislature. The ever-famous Ernie Chambers came up as being incredibly knowledgeable about the rules, so as to bend them in his favor. Mr. Lindsay talked about the importance of ethics and integrity and ensuring that you are worthy of the trust your constituents put in you. In one case, he described a donor only donating if Mr. Lindsey voted favorably for his company. Ironically, Mr. Lindsay had planned to do so, but was taken aback by his bold and unethical request.
From there, we discussed the differences between a super PAC and regular PACs, and what role they play in national and local politics. One example he used was Hillary Clinton and the massive amounts of money she has received for her campaign through various super PACs.
Ultimately, Mr. Lindsay left us on the note that we have huge potential, and that through lobbying, PACs, and responsible politicking, we can have a successful and fun time at Boys’ State!