Federal Eye: Obama Transition Donations Explained

The Eye has heard from some of the federal workers that have donated money to the Obama-Biden Transition Project, following a report earlier this week about their contributions. The donations of roughly three dozen federal employees, mostly rank-and-file types, account for 2 percent of the project’s total take so far.

“The Obama-Biden campaign had been such a brilliant mobilization of the grassroots, of community organization, that it seemed a terrible tragedy to now allow lobbyists to exert their moneyed interests,” said Sarah Spaulding, an ecologist with the U.S. Geological Survey in Denver. “I struggled over whether my contribution would even count against such forces, but in considering all the brave people that took a similar step to get involved in the Obama-Biden campaign, I knew I had no choice but to contribute what I could afford.”

The transition does not accept donations from corporations, labor unions, and political actions committees and caps donations at $5,000. Registered federal lobbyists and registered foreign agents also cannot donate. But people felt compelled to give.

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