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(WITH POLL) Latest Links: Hune No. 3 on Free-Meal List

Data shows $900 of the money comes from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.

State Sen. Joe Hune β€” whose district includes the Brighton and Hartland areas β€” received more than $1,900 in the form of free meals from lobbyists, ranking him the third highest in the state, according to an article in the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus.

The newspaper reported more $900 came from the nonprofit health giant Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Hune, R-Hamburg Township, is the chairman of the Senate Insurance Committee and has opposed a push to make Blue Cross a for-profit.

A Hune staffer defended the meals, saying the lawmaker has a busy schedule and people often meet while eating.

State Rep. Bill Rogers, R-Brighton, accepted $237 while State Rep. Cindy Denby, R-Handy Township, took none, the paper reported.

The Press & Argus followed-up on a Detroit Free Press report earlier this week that detailed an analysis of data by the Michigan Campaign Finance Network. It showed more than $525,000 was spent by lobbyists the first six months of 2011 on meals for elected officials. More than $120,000 also went toward group buffets at the Capitol.

Anyone can review campaign finance reports online at the Michigan Secretary of State's website. The campaign finance network provides tips on searching on its website.

Michael J. Ewing November 19, 2011 at 06:02 PM
This is just another form of lobbying, which is to say, bribery in a legal format. All forms of lobbying, including this one, should be made seriously illegal immediately. Thank you.

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