-- Roger Tamraz, an international businessman with an unsavory reputation who
gave $300,000 to Democrats for last year's election campaigns, testified on
Thursday that he had donated the money expressly to pry open the doors of
"It's the only reason -- to get access," Tamraz
told the senators investigating campaign finance practices.
Tamraz was asked whether he got his money's worth for his
large contributions. Yes, he replied and said, "I think next time I'll
Furthermore, Tamraz said, all his rivals in the oil business
were donating money and going to the White House, and he needed to give to
"The day we don't have to pay, I would be the
happiest," he said.
The senators reacted differently to the testimony depending
on their party. Democrats stressed that access had been given in exchange for
money and argued that the law should be changed to prohibit large
contributions. Republicans mostly ignored that question, since their hands are
hardly clean in the matter of granting access to donors.