Air Products Feels the Joementum


TPM Cafe's Election Central has an amusing story about a man named Richard Goodstein who showed up with a gaggle of Lieberman supporters to heckle Great Lefty Hope Ned Lamont when the Senate hopeful made an appearance at a local diner recently. As it turns out, he's a registered lobbyist in D.C.—though he hung up on EC before they could ask him about his connection to the Lieberman campaign.

Still, we can try a little dot-connecting of our own, no? Goodstein seems to make his living off just a couple major clients: the printer company Lexmark and Pennsylvania-based Air Products and Chemicals, which among other things is a major supplier to the semiconductor industry. Air Products' former chairman, Howard Wagner, now sits on the board of Lieberman's second largest donor, Connecticut-based United Technologies (though boards are such a musical-chairs affair that this probably doesn't mean much in itself). More to the point, Joe Lieberman has been one of the most vocal supporters in the Senate of government subsidies to and partnerships with the semiconductor industry, which (through its trade association) gave the Senator an award for his efforts on their behalf back in 2001. The company has also been expanding its nanotechnology division, another hobbyhorse of Lieberman's. The top press release on the front page of Air Products' site right now is an announcement of a profitable licensing deal with the University of Connecticut for a technology that will help in the development of next-generation video displays. So it certainly makes sense that Goodstein's main client would have an interest in keeping Lieberman, whose pet issue happens to be their industry, in office. [Cross-posted @ NftL.]