As previously mentioned, former Sen. Rick Santorum kept a stash of chocolate and other sweets in his desk and handed them out to his fellow senators. The Wall Street Journal provides a little more information, and gives the fate of the designated “candy desk.” (in New Senate, The ‘Candy Desk’ Gets a Kiss-Off,” by Sara Lueck, 1/05/07).
It seems the desk is one usually assigned a low ranking Republican (the sweet spot is the desk, not the person sitting in it); it is in a “heavily trafficked area near the exit to the elevators.” The new desk occupant is Sen. Craig Thomas of Wyoming, and that presents problems. As the WSJ points out:
Ethic rules forbid member accepting gifts worth $100 or more a year from a single source. One exception covers items produced in a senator’s home state – so long as they’re used primarily by people other than the senator or his staff.
During Sen. Santorum’s term at the candy desk Hershey and Just Born, among other Pennsylvania companies, supplied the treats. Unfortunately Wyoming is not as similarly blessed with confectionary industries. Two of the possible items the state’s smaller candy businesses could send include
“moose doodles (chocolate covered almonds shaped just like moose droppings) and bison balls (round Rice Krispies treats dipped in chocolate, sold in packages of two).”
Ummmm, I think I’ll pass on those, thanks.
The article gives a history of the candy desk and outlines some strategies being considered for keeping the tradition going.
I’m filing this under “intriguing but odd.”