Business & Lobbying

GOP lawmaker introduces bill to stop revolving door

Greg Nash

Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R-Ind.) introduced legislation this week that would ban former members of Congress from registering as lobbyists.

“Our government cannot keep operating in a way that puts political promises ahead of the well-being and growth of our country,” Hollingsworth said in statement Monday. “Politicians in Washington should be making decisions they know are right for their constituents and the country, not for their career or future lobbying job.”

{mosads}The lifetime lobbying ban would also punish any former member or senator who “knowingly makes, with the intent to influence” communication with a member on behalf of another person, in order to avoid members working as lobbyists without registering.

Former lawmakers who head to K Street have faced scrutiny over the kind of work they engage in and how they use their Capitol Hill connections. Critics say former lawmakers have been the biggest offenders of working in the influence world without formally registering as lobbyists.

When ex-Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-Va.) was named senior adviser in Baker Donelson’s Government Relations and Public Policy Group, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) questioned on Twitter if Comstock will register to lobby “or bob & weave around the rules?”

Comstock responded by suggesting Warren lacked civility.

No Democrats have signed on as co-sponsors to Hollingsworth’s bill, and there is not a companion bill in the Senate.

He introduced the same measure in the previous Congress. It failed to advance out of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice.

Hollingsworth was first elected in 2016 and serves on the Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

Warren, a 2020 White House candidate, is expected to soon re-introduce a similar bill that would impose a lifetime ban on former lawmakers from lobbying.

Tags Barbara Comstock Elizabeth Warren Trey Hollingsworth
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