consultants are sandburs

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Our CD6 current Congressional sweetheart and Bachmann surrogate, Tom Emmer; for "Foreign Affairs," he has Neil Bush as a potential role model.

He says he wanted to be on the transportation [aka pork-for-the-district] committee, but Boehner assigned him: Foreign Affairs. While he's been largely midwest-USA-bound his adult life, he has staff some of whom possibly may be helpful on a learning curve.

"I am very pleased with the great team we have assembled to work for Congressman-elect Emmer," said David FitzSimmons, Chief of Staff. "Emmer is ready to hit the ground running as a freshman congressman, and now has a strong staff to stand beside him."

Right, not FitzSimmons as another locally experienced only chief of affairs, to be the Rep's foreign affairs ghostwriter/ghost thinker. But hopefully one of the others on staff is there for Committee heavy lifting and explaining to Tom. Fitz's big thing to earn the appointment was to keep the gag on Emmer during the election so no embarrassing $100,000 waiter kind of stuff came out. And he handled the job, and was rewarded full GOP style. Often the jockey is as important as the horse.

Moving on -

Getting Emmer flexibly positioned on the Ag committee and Foreign Affairs committee will surely help serve Cargill international interests, never mind the need for good roads in Minnesota, (i.e., moving Cargill pork worldwide vs. bringing roadway pork back to our very needy TC and rural Minnesota areas); SC Times reporting:

The Delano Republican has additional responsibilities with his spots on the House agriculture and foreign affairs committees.

“I’m incredibly relaxed for whatever reason,” Emmer said in an interview Monday in his new Capitol Hill office. “It feels good. I’m ready to work.”

He hadn’t expected the foreign affairs appointment. He had initially requested assignment to committees overseeing financial services and transportation, an issue that was a cornerstone of his campaign. So over the next few weeks, he will be attending intensive briefings on foreign policy covering everything from North Korea to Iraq and Afghanistan and the battle against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

Emmer says he has general opinions on those fronts, but wants to learn more before casting a vote or taking public positions.

“I don’t have the benefit of the information that a lot of people here have,” he said. “I would guess that within the next couple of weeks at the minimum and probably within the next month as a maximum, I’ll be able to say, ‘This is where I’m at.’”

Strangely, from Cargill's home state he omitted mention of soybeans in Brazil from being in his study packet.

But Fitz will find a way to serve. Emmer, and Cargill. Already, wave those flags:

Yup. Fitz and Tom, and that paragraph in the pic -

By exporting the promise of liberty and free markets to the nations of the world, we can achieve these goals. Regions such as Latin America, Africa and Asia present us with emerging opportunities to increase trade and diplomatic relations.

Well, "emerging opportunities to increase trade and diplomatic relations," segues into the Niel Bush thinking.

Niel Bush is a man who took "emerging opportunities" in foreign affairs to levels we Minnesota citizens can only imagine. Read all about it. With that Salon headlining, " The return of Neil Bush -- Even in the Great Recession, the dim bulb of a dynasty manages to cash in on the family name," that "dim bulb" mention should resonate with Emmer, as well as with his attentive minder, Fitz.

The Salon story is lurid, featuring slush money and more, and hence easy flowing reading for most of us. The thing Fitz will have to mind and Emmer will have to have to have included by staff as part of his catch-up schooling - on foreign affairs:

Yet for all the handouts from the Bush family network, Neil’s ventures still failed to generate much profit. His famously nasty 2003 divorce proceedings with Sharon revealed that he was essentially broke. At the time, a well-placed source told me, he drove a minivan owned by his mother. The proceedings also revealed that on at least three business trips to Asia, women Neil didn’t know came into his hotel room unbidden and had sex with him. The practice, he acknowledged, seemed “very unusual.”

“You don’t think he was picked to be part of all of those business deals because he was so brilliant, do you?” Marshall Davis Brown, Sharon Bush’s attorney, asked when I met him at his Houston office. “He had a big hat but no horse.”

Neil has received relatively little press attention since his divorce, though he has been living well. In February 2005, Mexican magnate Jaime Camil hosted a 50th birthday party for Neil at his estate in Acapulco. The Houston Chronicle reported that two dozen Houstonians flew down for the festivities. “Saturday night, the host-with-the-most pulled out the stops at his expansive villa,” wrote the newspaper’s society columnist. “A lavish fireworks display topped off a night that included a 16-piece mariachi band, dancers from Mexico City’s Ballet Folklorico and gourmet fare.”

The truth is, failure has been very good to Neil. [...]

[link in original omitted]

A "dim bulb" story of how to nonetheless prosper might not be news to Emmer. But that part about the visiting ladies, Tom and Fitz need caution once some of the potential junketing begins. Presumably Cargill will be attentive and minding as well.

We watch Emmer and can only marvel at how adeptly he slips into the role previously held by Michele Bachmann.

And where Bachmann had Andy Parrish, Emmer upgrades; quietly having Fitz, (Bachmann's primary skill was publicly and loudly having fits).

Ain't politics grand?

And while Dayton went and called DC "a cesspool," we look forward to seeing how Emmer navigates his way through things.

Examining that staff list, the word "mediocrity" comes to mind, but it is not a new word when considering Emmer. It appears campaign workers get rewarded with intro into DC streams, while it bodes ill to see staffers who are Bachmann holdovers, Liberty University graduates, or both. Not a staff listing to be viewed as very promising for a wide reaching Minnesota Gestalt and service perspective, but the spoils system truly is not new with Emmer.

The thing on that staff, the closest to a Cargill-tight person might be

Landon Zinda, Legislative Counsel/Legislative Correspondent
Landon Zinda will be serve Emmer's D.C. office as Legislative Counsel. Landon graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota, and received his J.D. from American University. A native Minnesotan, Landon previously spent six years in the government affairs department of The Heritage Foundation following a series of internships for Minnesota legislators, including Rep. Mark Kennedy in the Sixth District.

Congressional staffs have a history of change and adaptation over time; and we can hope that Emmer's turnover of staff will mirror Bachmann's in terms of churning, but with upgrade, instead of conscious parallelism, happening at transitional times. It is a staff one would have expected of Emmer.

______________FURTHER UPDATE____________
Do we ask Emmer where he stands, or where he's been told to stand, on TPP and/or fast track (opposed by sustainable farming advocates, so also ask where he stands/is told to stand, on sustainable agriculture - as an appropriate question for an Ag Committee appointee, and a Foreign Relations appointee; or does he have to await a "briefing" to reach firm convictions)?

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