Under DC Code §§ 22-704, lobbying could be considered a crime -and the politicians that engage with lobbyists- guilty of Bribery. There is no conviction necessary, it is the act that makes these politician “guilty” by the definition of the law. A conviction might only be necessary to STOP these politicians and lobbyists from continuing.
Essentially, these people claim that lobbying is above board because they have turned it into a job; and all parties gain from the transactions except the people who fund such illicit
bribery lobbying. Such pay to play politics is/was essentially through and through the entirety of DC. Hillary Clinton’s pay to play in the State Department was only the most public instance. Besides Hillary Clinton loaning herself money to try to buy the Presidency, Donald Trump used debt to literally buy the presidency for exactly nothing, mere debt.
Here is the Text of DC Code §§ 22-702
(a) Whosoever corruptly, directly or indirectly, gives any money, or other bribe, present, reward, promise, contract, obligation, or security for the payment of any money, present, reward, or thing of value to any ministerial, administrative, executive, or judicial officer of the District of Columbia, or any employee, or other person acting in any capacity for the District of Columbia, or any agency thereof, either before or after the officer, employee, or other person acting in any capacity for the District of Columbia is qualified, with intent to influence such official’s action on any matter which is then pending, or may by law come or be brought before such official in such official’s official capacity, or to cause such official to execute any of the powers in such official vested, or to perform any duties of such official required, with partiality or favor, or otherwise than is required by law, or in consideration that such official being authorized in the line of such official’s duty to contract for any advertising or for the furnishing of any labor or material, shall directly or indirectly arrange to receive or shall receive, or shall withhold from the parties so contracted with, any portion of the contract price, whether that price be fixed by law or by agreement, or in consideration that such official has nominated or appointed any person to any office or exercised any power in such official vested, or performed any duty of such official required, with partiality or favor, or otherwise contrary to law; and whosoever, being such an official, shall receive any such money, bribe, present, or reward, promise, contract, obligation, or security, with intent or for the purpose or consideration aforesaid shall be deemed guilty of bribery and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by imprisonment for a term not less than 6 months nor more than 5 years. In addition to any other penalty provided under this section, a person may be fined an amount not more than the amount set forth in § 22-3571.01.