My day job is building tools for lobbyists, so I get to see who lobbyists really are, and who they really represent.
I know this knowledge I have is not widespread. More common is the belief the lobbyists work only on behalf of Big Tobacco or the Military Industrial Complex, or whatever.
Look, some of that is true, but it's not the whole story, and it's not even a big part of what's really going on.
I'm inspired to write this after reading a summary of a debate. (Please don't take this post as advocating for or against any particular candidate. I am 100-percent neutral in this race, and will be for at least another year.)
The debate hit on the topic of lobbyists, and one of the candidates said, "A lot of those lobbyists, whether you like it or not, represent real Americans."
The audience actually booed that statement. Then two others pounced on the notion, one of them asking the audience if any of them had a Washington lobbyist. Only two people raised a hand.
That would mean that nobody in the audience owns or rents a home, drives a car, uses Google, has insurance, gets health care, or even eats. Even if all that could be true, and the person was homeless, they would still have a lobbyist at the National Coalition for the Homeless, which is not based in Washington by accident.