“Nobody would be in favor of seeing children warehoused by the federal government,” said former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee in response to my follow-up question about immigrant children being detained for profit.
We've been asking all the candidates about a federal budget mandate that sets a quota for detention of immigrants, many of whom are held in for-profit prisons. So far all we've gotten in response are variations on "I'll look into it."
The disparity between public interest and private profits was emphasized April 3rd at the Open Secrets blog. According to the blog post, Management and Training Corporation is one of the big three in private corrections, along with Corrections Corporation of American and the GEO Group. Open Secrets says that these three companies spent $2 million on Congressional lobbying in 2014. Their money distorts public policy to benefit their own profits.
Lindsey Graham had an extended back-and-forth with voters in his first "testing the waters" trip to New Hampshire. The South Carolina Senator spoke at length about immigration, elaborated on his hawkish views on the Middle East, and expressed support for campaign finance reform.
Gov. Mike Huckabee was asked how he felt about children being detained at for-profit prisons on the U.S.-Mexico border. He answered by saying he was unfamiliar with the issue, "So it would be a little disingenuous for me to tell you what I’m gonna do to fix a problem I’m not aware of. So, I couldn’t answer that.”
Private companies invest millions in lobbying and election campaigns in order to pass policies that guarantee profits regardless of the human cost. Download the full infographic to see how money spent on lobbying affects policy, profits, and the rest of the world.
After Florida Senator Marco Rubio learns he has received $100,000 from Florida-based private prison GEO Group, says "I don't invest in other peoples agenda, they invest in my agenda" at book signing in Iowa.