The Hightower Report

Three GOP governors rush to help one citizen

Who says that big-time politicians pay no attention to their constituents?

This is, after all, America, where everyone has a right to "speak truth to power." You can get the personal attention of top elected officials simply by requesting a meeting. Assuming, of course, that your request is written on the back of a six- or seven-figure check to the official's campaign fund.

Let Sheldon Adelson be your model of civic engagement. He's a Nevada businessman who doesn't like unions, so he asked some big shot Republican governors to meet with him. Sure enough – BAM! – faster than a bullet leaves a gun, three governors jumped on this citizen's problem, even traveling to Nevada to talk with him. The three are Chris Christie of New Jersey, John Kasich of Ohio, and Scott Walker of Wisconsin.

Kasich set the tone for these responsive public servants when he said: "Hey, listen Sheldon, thanks for inviting me. I don't travel to these things much, but this was one that I thought was really, really important. And God bless you for what you do."

I don't know if God has blessed Adelson, but hordes of gamblers have. Adelson owns a global empire of casinos and is the 8th richest person in the world, with some $38 billion in personal wealth. And he certainly knows how to get the attention of top elected officials, having put $93 million into GOP presidential candidates in 2012. He has also written checks to groups that have helped advance the careers of Kasich, Christie, and Walker – three notorious union-busting governors who also just happen to have visions of being the Republican nominee for president in 2016.

So see, anyone in America – even you – can get the full attention of any elected political figure – as long as you're able to add enough zeros on your campaign donation check. Big Money is now the door knocker to political power. It's the Adelson model of American democracy in action.

For more information on Jim Hightower's work – and to subscribe to his award-winning monthly newsletter, The Hightower Lowdown – visit You can hear his radio commentaries on KOOP Radio, 91.7FM, weekdays at 10:58am and 12:58pm.

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