Jack Abramoff is one of the world’s most famous lobbyists and former Washington power players. Immortalised in the Hollywood movie ‘Casino Jack,’ Abramoff, who Time Magazine described on its cover as the”Man Who Bought Washington” was jailed for 3 1/2 years for his involvement in the most harrowing political scandal since Watergate.
He is now speaking out and his story is both fascinating and informative. Few know more than he about how Washington really works. Jack’s lessons are of great interest and relevance to any organisation that seeks gain through politics world-wide.
Abramoff once labeled the dysfunctional and Byzantine system which has become our federal government as the “favour factory”. None can better show why this factory needs to be shuttered, so good government and democracy can prevail. Jack’s is a lesson that effects politics and business not just in the US but world-wide where lobbying officially or unofficially is conducted by politicians and businessmen alike as a serious business that often results in huge outcomes.
Abramoff was born in Atlantic City, grew up in Beverly Hills and graduated from Brandeis University with a degree in English Literature and Opera. At Brandeis, Abramoff commenced his political career, heading the state-wide College Republican group and was credited with delivering Massachusetts to Ronald Reagan in 1980. Abramoff was soon elected as the national chairman of the College Republicans and built that organisation into the largest student political organisation in the free world.His next position foreshadowed his rise to national prominence, as he was chosen to head President Reagan’s grassroots lobbying organisation. In this role, Abramoff honed the lobbying skills he would later deploy to become the nation’s top legislative advocate.
Under his leadership the organisation moved major Reagan administration initiatives through the Congress and sponsored the world’s first convocation of anti-Soviet forces in the bush of Southern Africa.As the Reagan era wound down, Abramoff moved from the world of politics to the world of cinema, becoming a motion picture producer – making action adventure films, including “Red Scorpion” starring Dolph Lundgren. His international experience in structuring motion picture finance made him a popular lecturer at Georgetown University Law Center, where he had graduated from in 1986; but the siren call of politics drew Abramoff back to his roots, and in 1994, he joined the lobbying division of the law firm headed by Bill Gates’ father.
Abramoff set to work and, within a few years, built one of the nation’s most prestigious and profitable lobbying practices. As Abramoff continued to build, his political base expanded and soon he found himself at the top of his profession. When a corporation, Indian tribe, or foreign nation needed to win, they went to Team Abramoff, the eclectic hand-picked team of lobbying guns he assembled. Their clients rarely were defeated, and reaped billions of dollars of benefit. Abramoff’s arsenal included his Signatures restaurant, one of Washington’s finest, some of the best sports tickets in the nation, and an unlimited capacity to raise funds to fuel the political system which made his influence possible.
Abramoff had it all. And then it was gone. In an instant, his world collapsed and Abramoff fell into the abyss, eventually landing in federal prison, his name becoming synonymous with corruption and what’s wrong with governments.
How Lobbyists Shape Your Industry: Everything Your Company Needs to Know, and Probably Doesn’t Know About the Influential World of Lobbying
Former super lobbyist Jack Abramoff possesses an unfiltered view of the corporate dealings in Washington, and, in his corporate talks, he shares cautionary tales, best practices, and big picture insight that will benefit almost any corporation world-wide. With unparalleled insight, Abramoff can help your company or industry avoid lobbying traps, such as letting the system unwittingly undo your best efforts.
With stirring detail Abramoff takes you to the high-stakes intersection where business meets politics. This is an eye-opening and absolutely necessary talk.
– What do you need to know about how lobbying really works?
– How lobbying works in your industry?
– What are your competitors doing?
– How can you participate in lobbying efforts that are fair and efficient?
– Is Government for Sale?
– Is Ethical Lobbying Possible?
– Can Washington & Other Governments Be Fixed?
– Overcoming Collapse
The fall from grace changed Jack Abramoff and woke him up. And now, Abramoff is determined to do all he can to rectify the wrong he did and to identify and help end the corruption of the system he so well played. His orations will not only serve as a cautionary tale, but as an historic platform for reform of the system.