Former rep lobbyist stays with telecom industry

The U.S. Telecom Association has kept on a former congressman who spent 15 years in the House, after he moved from one law firm to another earlier this year.

The trade group, which is widely known as USTelecom and represents companies including AT&T and Verizon, is paying former Rep. Albert Wynn (D-Md.) to “monitor federal and legislative activity related to the telecommunications industry,” according to a lobbying disclosure form recently made public. 

Wynn formerly worked for USTelecom while at the Dickstein Shapiro law firm.

This summer, Wynn moved to rival firm Greenberg Traurig as part of a group of 13 lobbyists who decamped to the office made famous in the Jack Abramoff scandal. 

Wynn is a former member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee's telecommunications subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over many of the issues affecting the broadband Internet companies that make up USTelecom. 

USTelecom has been a vocal voice on issues like net neutrality — the idea that all Web traffic should be treated equally, about which the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is in the process of writing new rules. The industry group has said that it supports a “light touch” for new regulations and has opposed the possibility of regulating broadband Internet companies like traditional phone service, as some Democrats and consumer advocates have suggested.

The group is also active in supporting an FCC fund that puts broadband in schools, libraries and rural areas and has told Washington to stay out of deals that websites and Internet service providers make to connect their networks directly and give users faster Web speeds.  

— Updated on Sept. 5 to note the previous relationship between USTelecom and Wynn.