President Obama said in a recent interview with The Economist that when he frequently has lunch with CEO’s, he encourages them to urge their corporate lobbyists to work harder to pass Obama’s agenda.
Obama also noted that CEO’s don’t like to admit that they have lunch with him so often.
“Well, I think — here’s what’s interesting. There’s a huge gap between the professed values and visions of corporate CEOs and how their lobbyists operate in Washington,” Obama said. “And I’ve said this to various CEOs. When they come and they have lunch with me — which they do more often than they probably care to admit (laughter) — and they’ll say, you know what, we really care about the environment, and we really care about education, and we really care about getting immigration reform done — then my challenge to them consistently is, is your lobbyist working as hard on those issues as he or she is on preserving that tax break that you’ve got? And if the answer is no, then you don’t care about it as much as you say.”
Well, there you have it, kids. You can’t change Washington on your own. You just need to get out there, engage, inform, and privately urge CEO’s over lunch to tell their high-paid corporate lobbyists to push harder for things that don’t benefit their companies. That’s change we can believe in.