Have Influence, Will Travel

Deaver's clout cost big bucks

May 1985. Trans World Airlines is trying to fend off a takeover by Carl Icahn. The beleaguered company petitions the Transportation Department to hold a hearing that would delay Icahn's bid, but it looks like the request will be turned down. Searching for other options, TWA needs to buy time -- and influence. Enter former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Michael Deaver. That very month Deaver has left Ronald Reagan's employ to start a Washington "consulting" firm. According to Jon Ash, a former TWA executive, Deaver says, "I can give ((Transportation Secretary)) Elizabeth Dole a call." Deaver's fee: $250,000.

June...