A long time ago, when I was a practicing lawyer, I concocted a scheme with another Mormon lawyer to raise an investment fund targeted at companies that cater to vices. Alcohol, tobacco, p0rn, etc. We reasoned from the scriptures that the world would get worse before it would get better. Why not profit from knowing the future? This was all tongue in cheek, of course, and we never acted on our idea. Orrin Hatch apparently doesn’t see the humor:
Sen. Orrin Hatch, a former LDS bishop who does not drink, has taken more money from wine, beer and liquor groups this year than any other congressional candidate.
The alcohol interests gave him $25,000. Rep. Mike Thompson, R-Calif., whose district is in California’s wine country, is second with $21,568. In third place with $20,000 is Rep. Anne M. Northrup, R-Ky., who represents an area famous for bourbon.
That is not all. Hatch, R-Utah, who follows his LDS faith’s admonition against smoking, took the fifth-most money this year among all congressional candidates from tobacco interests. The $13,000 he took was more than was donated to such tobacco-state politicians as Sen. Elizabeth Dole, R-N.C. ($11,000), and Rep. Mike McIntyre, D-N.C. ($9,500).
Again, Hatch, who says he also opposes gambling, as does his LDS faith, took the 15th most among Senate candidates this year from gambling interests. The $8,000 he accepted was more, for example, than has been accepted by Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., who also is a Latter-day Saint and who represents a state famous for casinos. Reid took $5,000 from such groups.
Would it really be so hard to take a principled stand against these products?
Wait a second, there is a principle:
Dave Hansen, Hatch’s campaign manager, said Friday, “The senator made the decision from the beginning that if a group wanted to make a contribution because what he is doing in Washington is good for Utah and America, and it is a legal and lawful group, he would accept it.”
Don’t even think about the “H” word (hypocrisy, that is):
A Hatch spokesman said it is not hypocrisy to take money from groups whose products the senator opposes. The spokesman said the groups may donate because they like Hatch’s stands on many issues besides what he thinks personally of their products.
They must want Harriet Miers, too.
Thanks to Paul Hunter for the tip.