(This post is from our new blog: Unofficial Sources.)

Fondness for lobbyists is one of the many things in Washington that transcend partisanship.

The Bryce Harlow Foundation awards dinner, a party thrown by lobbyists as a “celebration within the lobbying community in Washington, D.C.” brings together senior lawmakers and lobbyists for a night of self-congratulation.

At last week’s gala, when Minority Whip Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., the second ranking Democrat in the House, introduced Steve Elmendorf, a lobbyist for Goldman Sachs, Verizon, and other corporate interests, Hoyer was effusive in thanking his hosts. The Politico Influence newsletter quoted Hoyer as saying:

“I’m thankful to all of you for what you do because I think what you do is critically important to what I do and to what our people expect us to do, and that is to understand the issues that confront us and them and make the decisions that help them.”

The event serves as annual opportunity for lawmaker to single out a lobbyist for an award, and vice versa. Elmendorf was the lawmakers’ pick. Lobbyists gave their award to Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton, R-Mich.

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty