I get that these folks want equal opportunity corruption, but that does not mean that they should some sort of special permission to install a revolving door at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue:
A battle is brewing on K Street over an effort by progressives to ensure a Biden administration is devoid of any former Wall Street executives or corporate lobbyists.They are literally arguing for corruption.
Black and Latino lobbyists say a ban of that sort would end up shutting out minorities and could make the administration less diverse if Democrats win back the White House.
The tensions date back to April, when eight progressive groups wrote a letter calling on former Vice President Joe Biden to vow not to appoint any “current or former Wall Street executives or corporate lobbyists, or people affiliated with the fossil fuel, health insurance or private prison corporations” to his transition team, Cabinet or as top aides.
That demand did not sit well with some minority lobbyists, who argue that corporate lobbyists shouldn’t be denied a spot in the administration.
“Given the wokeness of these people, I find it odd they are so comfortable lumping a large group of people together. They have an agenda that is limiting and it has always been limiting,” said Michael Williams, founder of the Williams Group, one of the few Black-owned lobbying shops in D.C.
“Vice President Biden has made it clear that he's going to make it a priority to clean up Trump's mess by putting in place tough safeguards against the sort of rampant cronyism and lobbyist influence we've seen over the last four years, even as Biden ensures that his administration's staffing reflects America's diversity,” Biden for President spokesman Michael Gwin said.
Nicole Venable, a lobbyist at Invariant, criticized the effort by progressives, saying their goal to have a Biden administration filled with staff reflecting all of America is undercut by these types of restrictions.
Alliance for Youth Action, one of the groups that signed the April letter to Biden, stressed that progressives are particularly concerned about corporate lobbyists serving in a future administration.
“The letter we've sent doesn't call for a ban on lobbyists, it calls for a ban on explicitly CORPORATE lobbyists like the ones who have been able to push a harmful agenda within the Trump administration which have taken away government's ability to protect people of color, young workers and children from pollutants in our air and water and predatory economic practices which continue to hold them in poverty,” Carmel Pryor, senior director of communications at Alliance for Youth Action, told The Hill in an email.
You want equal rights to profit off of government service.
I want no one to profit off of government service.