READING THE LOBBYIST TEA LEAVES….Matt Yglesias suggests today that shifts in the hiring patterns of Washington lobbysists may signal good news for Democrats in November. Here’s the relevant stat from the Washington Post:

According to a review of job listings in, a lobbying newsletter, more than 40 percent of lobbyists with identifiable party backgrounds hired in the past six months have been Democrats. During the same period a year earlier, Democrats constituted only 30 percent of those hired.

That is interesting, given Republican efforts over the past decade to bludgeon K Street into hiring only Republicans or else suffer the consequences, but what really struck me was the, um, candid reaction from K Street Project enforcer Grover Norquist:

K Street Project spokesman Grover G. Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, fumed that the Glickman hiring was “a mistake. It’s goofy. It’s a studied insult.” The Motion Picture Association’s “ability to work with the House and Senate is greatly reduced because they’ve decided to hire a guy whose claim to fame is that he is a retired Clinton hire,” Norquist said.

….Beier’s move to Amgen in December angered K Street Project spokesman Norquist. “That’s not very wise on their part,” he said. Speaking of key Republican leaders, Norquist added ominously, “People are aware that this has happened. It’s going to be treated seriously.”

Grover’s not exactly subtle, is he? But he fits in nicely with Karl “We Will Fuck Him” Rove and Dick “Go Fuck Yourself” Cheney, doesn’t he?

And while we’re on the subject, let me recommend the definitive article about the K Street Project: “Welcome to the Machine,” written last year by Washington Monthly editor Nick Confessore. It’s must reading for anyone interested in how ruthlessly Republicans play the power game in Washington DC these days.

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