Morgan Pehme, co-director of HBO’s “The Swamp,” says the documentary highlights the systemic corruption in politics, including how House members have to pay for their committee seats.
“Until you see for yourself the systemic corruption that permeates the system you don’t have a sense of what trouble we are in as a nation,” Pehme said Tuesday during an appearance on Newsmax TV’s “Greg Kelly Reports.”
“Members of Congress spend sometimes between 30 to 70 percent of their time fundraising,” he added, referring to a clip of Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., discussing fundraising efforts.
“What Massie is talking about there is not fundraising for campaigns. He’s actually talking about the mind-boggling fact that members of Congress have to pay for their committee seats, and they have to pay their parties in order to get their seats every two years in the House congressional cycle.”
Members of Congress are expected to raise six-figure sums as “dues” to their party campaign committees in order to secure committee seats. The price tag steepens based on the power of both the committee and the seat.
Pehme says the stipulation increases the influence of money in politics.
“The only place you’re going to get hundreds of thousands of dollars, and that’s how much these committee seats cost, is from the special interests and the lobbyists that have an interest in the work product of those committees and that goes to show just how corrupted the system is by the outsized influence of the lobbyists and special interests that have their voices heard way before the American people’s voices in Congress,” he said.
“The Swamp” features three GOP members in a two-hour behind the scenes look at what goes on in the nation’s Capitol. Filmed over the course of 2019, it airs Tuesday at 9 p.m. on HBO.
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