lobbying

EPA Moves to Repeal Climate Rule; Lawsuits to Follow
With Clean Power Plan on the chopping block, environmental groups gear up to sue

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, left, said this week that unraveling the Clean Power Plan would right “the wrongs of the Obama administration.” (Tom Williams/Roll Call File Photo)

The EPA’s move on Tuesday to undo the Obama administration’s signature climate change rule will almost certainly trigger an onslaught of lawsuits from environmental groups and many blue states that have been bracing for that action since President Donald Trump took office.

The agency said it had filed a notice with the Federal Register proposing to unravel the 2015 Clean Power Plan and will seek public input into that proposal over a 60-day period. But the EPA did not commit to promulgating a replacement policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which environmentalists have said would lead them to sue to stop the repeal or force the agency to write a new policy.

Lobbyists Use of Capitol Meeting Space Raises Questions
Former Rep. Connie Mack organized discussion on Ukraine

Former Florida Rep. Connie Mack, arranged to use a Capitol meeting room on behalf of a lobbying client. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A recent panel discussion about alleged governmental corruption in Ukraine, organized by lobbyist and former Rep. Connie Mack, has raised questions about the appropriate uses of meeting rooms under the House speaker’s jurisdiction.

It also offers a glimpse into the often murky world of lobbying on behalf of foreign clients seeking to use the nation’s capital as a way to advance policies abroad.

Podcast: Quitting Congress When the ‘Swamp is Constipated’
The Big Story, Episode 73

(RJ Matson/CQ Roll Call)

CQ Roll Call lobbying reporter Kate Ackley and executive talent-hunter Julian Ha discuss the job market for lawmakers and staff members in the Age of Trump. “I think the system is constipated,” says Ha.

Subscribe on iTunesVIDEO: Top Headhunter Says D.C. Swamp is ‘Constipated’

Tech Lobbyists Join Fight Over DACA and Immigration
Company execs lambast decision to rescind Obama-era program

Immigration rights demonstrators march from the White House to the Trump Hotel and the Justice Department to oppose President Trump's decision to end the DACA program for "dreamers" on Sept. 5. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Tech industry giants are beginning to mobilize their deep K Street networks to pressure lawmakers as Congress tries to address the legal status of undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children.

A week after the sector’s top brass, such as Microsoft President Brad Smith, lambasted the Trump administration’s decision to rescind an Obama-era program for those young undocumented immigrants, tech industry lobbyists are looking for a way to turn their bosses’ words into a strategy on Capitol Hill.

Government Outlines Corruption Case Against Menendez
Some arguments will be about the Senate's ethics rules

The government is previewing its case against Sen. Robert Menendez (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Federal law enforcement is outlining its case against Sen. Robert Menendez, alleging they have the evidence to show a pattern of corruption that includes a $20,000 flight to the local airport here.

When the private plane of a South Florida eye doctor who has been a friend and supporter of Menendez was unavailable to transport the New Jersey Democrat and others from the Dominican Republic, Dr. Salomon Melgen procured a friend’s plane.

Lobbyists Push GOP to Repeal Obamacare Fees in Tax Overhaul
Trade group is launching digital ad buys in key states

Senate Finance Chairman Orrin G. Hatch, seen here with Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow wants to look at a possible repeal of the 2010 health care law's taxes as part of a larger tax package. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The Republican effort to repeal President Barack Obama’s signature health care law may have stalled, but lobbyists are pushing the GOP to continue to target the provisions the industry most despises: the law’s taxes.

House and Senate Republicans hope to push forward on a tax overhaul when Congress returns in September, an item they previously delayed in favor of health care. Repealing the 2010 health care law and its corresponding taxes would have helped simplify the GOP’s upcoming work, but those hopes were deflated when the Senate did not pass a repeal bill last month.

Lobbying After Congress Declines in Popularity
Roll Call looks at what alums of the 114th Congress are up to

Clockwise from top left: former Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada, former Reps. Janice Hahn of California and Candice S. Miller of Michigan, former Sens. Barbara Boxer of California, Mark S. Kirk of Illinois, Barbara A. Mikulski of Maryland and David Vitter of Louisiana, former Rep. Steve Israel of New York, former House Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio and former Rep. Renee Ellmers of North Carolina. (Bill Clark and Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photos)

By KYLE STEWART and GRIFFIN CONNOLLY

Whether it was the ascension of Donald Trump, the endless vitriol of today’s politics or other factors, former members of the 114th Congress departed Washington in droves, a marked difference from previous Congresses when the most popular destinations for former members were D.C. lobbying firms.

How One Ex-Chief of Staff Went From Taking Meetings to Asking for Them
Former aide to Rep. Joe Wilson organized 300-person fly-in for NAMA

Eric Dell, seen here at last year’s National Automatic Merchandising Association fly-in, left the Hill in 2013 for a job with the trade group. (Courtesy NAMA)

For nine years, Eric Dell met with lobbyists hoping to get some face time with his boss. Now, he’s the one looking for face time.

Dell, senior vice president for external affairs at the National Automatic Merchandising Association, on Wednesday staged his third fly-in for the group, where more than 300 NAMA members flew in to D.C. to talk to lawmakers about issues impacting the vending and refreshment services industry.

Health Care, Tax Overhauls Drive Lobbying in Trump Era
“We’re feeling really confident going into the second half of the year”

During the turbulent first six months of the Trump administration, some of the biggest lobbying groups scaled back their spending as his signature initiatives collapsed. But major agenda items, including a tax overhaul, will continue to fuel K Street work.

Other wish-list items in the coming months will include a measure to raise the nation’s debt limit, funding the government for fiscal 2018, and continued negotiations about shoring up the nation’s health care system, even as Republican efforts to dismantle the 2010 health care law have cratered.

K Street Ups Pressure for Congress to Raise Debt Limit
“We’d like this to be resolved quickly”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has urged Congress to address the debt limit soon, but lawmakers have not yet set a schedule, prompting concern among business and financial services groups. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Wall Street and K Street haven’t hit the panic button just yet, but lobbyists for financial services and business groups are increasing their pressure on lawmakers to swiftly extend the debt limit and fund the government without drama.

Their main focus is on the debt limit, which the Trump administration has asked Congress to increase by this fall. Without an increase — or suspension — lawmakers would jeopardize the nation’s ability to pay its bills. Even just debating the debt limit can cause global stock market losses, and an actual breach of the nation’s borrowing authority carries potentially catastrophic consequences.