Game Critic Lieberman Got Campaign $$$ from Industry Donors

December 26, 2006 -
The recent announcement that longtime video game industry critics Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT) and Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) were supporting an ad campaign to promote awareness of the ESRB rating system was viewed as a surprising coup for the game biz.

However, an article in this morning's Hartford Courant raises questions about campaign donations Lieberman received from donors with ties to the video game industry. The four-term senator won a return to the Senate in November as an independent following a pitched election battle with anti-war challenger Ned Lamont.

Citing data from the Center for Responsive Politics, the Courant's Washington, D.C. Bureau Chief, David Lightman, reports that Lieberman's campaign received $73,000 in game-related donations, including funds from Linda McMahon, CEO of WWE Entertainment, a Stamford, CT-based corporation. Numerous teen-rated professional wrestling games bearing the WWE license have been published in recent years.

Said Massie Ritsch of the Center for Responsive Politics:
If you're going to portray yourself as a champion against sex and violence on TV and in video games, it certainly doesn't look like you're completely serious if one of your big contributors makes its money from sex and violence.

According to the Courant report, Lieberman has a history of defending donations from the entertainment sector. The newspaper account says that in 2000, when Lieberman was unsuccessfully running for vice president on the Al Gore ticket, he attacked the industry at a congressional hearing but praised it at a high-priced fundraising event a short time later.

Other 2006 campaign contributors included Xbox 360 manufacturer Microsoft. Of the campaign contributions, Lieberman said:
(The money) obviously doesn't affect my behavior, and the system allows for anyone who wants to see what I get to view all the donations.

Comments

@Zippy

And I stand by my earlier statement: If that's your idea of inappropriate sexual content for your kids, throw out all your TVs now because you get that level of sex in a good chunk of commercials and almost every prime-time show on the big networks.

Calling a contribution from WWE one from the "video game industry" is ridiculous, but I don't believe that's what was said. The writer commented that WWE"makes its money from sex and violence" and that's arguably true, although -I'd- argue that if what you see during WWE matches counts as "sex" you might as well throw out all your TVs right now for the sake of your children since there's not a single prime-time show that doesn't have that much T&A at least a few times a season, and that's not counting the various commercials that equal or top the WWE.

As for principles, did anyone here think Liebermann had any? Anyone?

....Anyone? Didn't think so.

I'll also add that if he can really be bought for 73,000.... then the rest of the people on that list *vastly* overpaid.

I really can't say I'm surprised by this. Throughout his entire career, Lieberman has shown himself to be a consummate career politician. At the end of the day, the only thing he really cares about is staying in office. I can't really understand why the people of Connecticut keep re-electing this guy, because really, they should know better. The only way he'll ever leave is if he dies in office, and even then, I heave the feeling he'll be clutching onto his desk with a death grip, and they'll have to pry him off of it with a crowbar. :p

I'm sorry, but you've got to be kidding me. Talk about trying to create controversy out of nothing.

Take a look at the link and see for yourself. According to the site (which I note the Courant article did not link, merely mentioned.) in support of the 2006 election, Lieberman raised $20,213,419. Over. Twenty. Million. Dollars. The amount of the contributions from the "video game industry".... $73,000. No wonder his first response to their accusations was to laugh himself silly and "joke 'I really don't get anything [contributions] from that industry.'

And the contribution from WWE that the article makes so much about, devoting more than half of their space to discussing? $2,000. Wow, I'm sure he's really going to fall all over himself doing things for someone that contributed almost one hundredth of one percent of his campaign money. Actually I find this even more ridiculous, since all of the WWE games I am aware of are rated Teen. And with the exception of the usually unseen and overhyped Bully, I don't think I've ever heard of anyone going after any Teen rated game as inappropriate or in need of legislation. Where is the supposed conflict of interest that should have made him aware of this miniscule donation in order to refuse it?

@ Black Manta
He got in because a little over half of the voters here are stupid. But then, looking at many of our elected officials, I'd say that over half of voters in the nation are stupid.

@Gamerdad

If it has anything to do with the report card, it has a lot more to do with the fact that they aren't supported by anyone except for Jack Thompson if they go with anti-ESRB rhetoric at this point. It is a smart political choice, but only because their constructed boogey man became less scary.

Another move for them would have been to hate on both the ESRB and NIMF, a move parents would get behind because NIMF demanded they be responsible and visit sites like Gamerdad or even *gasp* read the ratings!

A politician bought off? You don't say! Gosh almighty, that never happens.

Politicians, especially those who make a career out of it, need cash to remain in power. Hollywood and the RIAA are major contributers to politicians across the country. Video games, being in some sense a new Hollywood, are merely a new industry to shake down.

"A lovely little industry you have here. It would be a shame if we had to regulate it out of business."

Hes a poli hes getter crackers....... er .........money from everyone.

I'm normally more cynical than this but I don't think he's been "influenced" at all!

The shift Lieberman and Clinton have made isn't a big a deal as people make out. For one thing, his "Report Card" makes it clear that the ESRB, in Liberman's view, is now doing a good job and that parents are most "at fault" (meaning: they need more info, imo).

Plus the wind just changed. The midterms were a loss for cultural conservatives, which includes Democratic stuff like anti-videogame legislation. The winds changed, dems like Hilary and Lieberman need cultural cover/credibility less now than before, AND the anti-videogame laws are being overturned and Governors are being embarrassed.

My point is, Lieberman and Clinton, in my view, are making a normal and political move away from extreme anti-videogame rhetoric and toward support not because of campaign money... but because it's the smart political choice right now.

Okay, I am still cynical, just not as much as some.

... gotta love it.

Regardless of whether it was caused by $$ or not- I still can't stand how some politicians turn 180 degrees so readily. For Lieberman, Hillary, and the NIMF (still entrenched in politics) to suddenly change their tune so drastically and quickly is alarming. I have more respect for people who actually stick to their convictions...

Politician for sale.... Sold!!

After that Bush Incident, he is still not enough?

Lieberman sir, you can come and kiss my ass now.

Also, I found this listing on craigslist:

1 Joe Lieberman, willing to sell for $73,000 in campaign funds, WHAT A DEAL!

It is NOT OK to contact this poster about unrelated commercial stuffs lol.

Wait a minute : it's WWE, so it's not really a game company (although there are some WWE games).

Brer
never seen the girls of WWE or one of the wrestling knock off shows?
theres wheres the sex is brought in,altho one could argue half necked guys prancing around would count to *rolls eyes*
 
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Should ‘sexism’ factor into a video game’s rating?:

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Michael ChandraWonderkarp, try games where you don't get interactive cutscenes and only the main character really talks to people. Or games with a silent protagonist. I think the Bechdel test is a nice indicator (though flawed) for movies and such, but not games.11/22/2014 - 7:56am
ZippyDSMleeWymorence: HTD was a fun and very messed up film I love it. A new one would be nothing like it sadly.11/22/2014 - 1:57am
Andrew EisenOnly if we lived in a world where a bad movie meant every subsequent attempt would suck. Seriously though, after the last few years, I'll give Marvel the benefit of the doubt that it could make a great Howard the Duck movie.11/22/2014 - 1:29am
Wymorenceisn't that a GOOD thing there isn't a movie after the abomination that was the first?11/22/2014 - 12:27am
Andrew EisenNo movie in sight but Howard the Duck is returning to comics! https://games.yahoo.com/news/howard-duck-series-announced-184400635.html11/21/2014 - 10:48pm
MechaCrashThe point of the Bechdel Test isn't "is this film sexist," it's to illustrate "this is an incredibly low bar and most movies STILL can't pass it."11/21/2014 - 10:11pm
mthielNew report on Adam Lanza http://tinyurl.com/pnj9os611/21/2014 - 8:07pm
Andrew EisenIf you missed the HuffPost segment I guested on, the replay is now embedded in the story.11/21/2014 - 6:05pm
Wonderkarphttps://pbs.twimg.com/media/B2__4yZCcAA9Ytp.jpg these look amazing. Peach is the only one I'm tempted to open cause her packaging is bent. get another nonbent one....man. toycollector me and gamecollector me is fighting11/21/2014 - 5:51pm
WonderkarpJust finalized my Smash Bros free Sound Track Order. Also got 4 amiibos and they look fantastic. I'm afraid to open them. they look spectacular!11/21/2014 - 5:45pm
james_fudgeCan we all agree that Andrew cleans up nicely and can go on any program?11/21/2014 - 5:01pm
Wonderkarpthank you for that line, Andrew. alot of great films fail the bechdel test. Gravity fails it and it has a female lead.11/21/2014 - 4:48pm
Andrew EisenAw, thanks James! Well, now I have to drive back to work!11/21/2014 - 4:45pm
Andrew EisenDidn't have a chance to say this on the HuffPost segment but while the Bechdel test is useful as a broad examination of gender representation in media, it's not at all appropriate as a judgment of quality.11/21/2014 - 4:45pm
james_fudgeAndrew you killed it!11/21/2014 - 4:44pm
WonderkarpMadeline Bergman. second female, they never speak of men, just a computer program. it passes the test11/21/2014 - 4:34pm
E. Zachary KnightDoes Other M have more than one woman in it?11/21/2014 - 4:31pm
Wonderkarpyet Metroid Other M, a game where people cried sexist due to the commanding officers restricting Samus, passes the test....11/21/2014 - 4:21pm
Wonderkarpwait...they are using the bechdel test to determine which games are sexist?.....how does that work with a game like Super Mario Bros when there is no Dialogue? test itself is BS. Alien doesn't pass it11/21/2014 - 4:20pm
james_fudgeAndrew Eisen on Ice! Please join in at 4:23 pm et and support our bestie! http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/sweden-sexism-video-game/546d41cffe344486d400023711/21/2014 - 4:05pm
 

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