AIG closes Washington lobby shop

American International Group (AIG), the insurance firm that has received roughly $180 billion in government support in the financial crisis, is officially closing its Washington lobbying office.

“Given the restructuring, we're closing our Washington office,” said Christina Pretto, spokeswoman for AIG.

AIG was a major lobbying presence in Washington for many years. In 2008, the firm spent nearly $10 million on lobbying, according to congressional records.

“We'll continue to rely on a few outside law firms to respond to congressional requests,” Pretto said, but the firm will not lobby.

After it began receiving bailout funds, AIG decided to suspend its federal lobbying practices, but it maintained a Washington office. AIG has roughly 20 employees in Washington, Pretto said.

AIG officials provided the government with information after that point, but according to AIG's lobbying records, the company did not lobby lawmakers in the first quarter of 2009. AIG spent $1.25 million on the Washington office in the first three months of the year.

Pretto said AIG would continue to do government relations work at the state level, where insurance products are regulated.