When Evan Bayh announced he was retiring from politics because the Senate had become a disfunctional pit of partisan rancor and he wanted to be “engaged in an honorable line of work,” I didn’t really believe him. Still, signing up with a private equity firm and then Fox News was a little more blatant on the cashing-in front than I expected. And now Andy Kroll passes along word that the other shoe has dropped:
Bayh has signed on with one of the most corporate-friendly, anti-environment shops in all of Washington, DC: the US Chamber of Commerce. According to an internal memo penned by Chamber president Tom Donohue, Bayh, along with former Bush White House chief of staff Andy Card, are now part of the Chamber’s anti-regulation messaging team, doing “speeches, events, and media appearances at local venues.”
The Chamber’s hiring of Bayh, a big name in Washington circles, will only help its efforts to delay or kill new regulatory legislation in Congress….Bayh and Card, the memo says, will help the Chamber push this pro-corporate agenda in Washington and beyond.
Fine. Bayh is tired of living like a peon and wants to make some money while the making is good. And the best source of money for an ex-Senator is the bottomless checkbook of the U.S. corporate sector and its cheerleaders.
Like I said: fine. But no more sanctimonious speeches and op-eds, OK? I really don’t think I could stomach that.