n a tense exchange with an AP reporter on Thursday, Mitt Romney insisted that even though a registered lobbyist is one of his senior advisers, lobbyists do not "run" his campaign.
The claim is part of Romney's new self-styled outsider message: lobbyists are part of a broken Washington system and Romney has nothing to do with them.
"My campaign is not based on Washington lobbyists," Romney said. "I haven't been in Washington. I don't have lobbyists at my elbow that are arguing for one industry or another industry and I do not have favors I have to repay to people who have been in Washington for years."
The truth is that Romney is tied closely with many lobbyists. The AP reporter Romney exchanged sharp words with later reported that several Romney aides and advisers are lobbyists. Additionally, as the Nation first reported, Romney has accepted the second most money from lobbyists of any Republican presidential candidate, and has received the most endorsements from lobbyists.