White House aide moves to lobbying firm

White House aide moves to lobbying firm
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Joseph Lai, special assistant to the president for legislative affairs, will join BGR Government Affairs as a vice president.

Lai will focus on trade and defense issues, effective later this month. He left the White House in early August and there has been no announcement yet of his replacement.

He has worked for President TrumpDonald John TrumpCDC updates website to remove dosage guidance on drug touted by Trump Trump says he'd like economy to reopen 'with a big bang' but acknowledges it may be limited Graham backs Trump, vows no money for WHO in next funding bill MORE since Jan. 2017 when he led outreach to the Senate on economic issues. Recently, he has been focused on passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) and tariffs.

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“Joe has earned the trust of his colleagues in the Administration as well as with Senators and their policy staff. His substantive experience working to advance pro-growth economic policies will add tremendous value to our work for clients,” former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, founding partner at BGR, said in a press release. 

“His unique ability to discuss the development of legislative strategy between the Senate Republican majority and the White House will provide crucial insights,” Barbour said.

Prior to the White House, Lai worked as legislative director and military legislative assistant to Sen. Roger WickerRoger Frederick WickerBottom Line Stimulus empowers Treasury to rescue airlines with billion in direct assistance White House, Senate reach deal on trillion stimulus package MORE (R-Miss.) and worked for ex-Sens. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) and Chuck HagelCharles (Chuck) Timothy HagelMore than 100 national security professionals urge Trump to invoke Defense Production Act Almost 100 former officials, members of Congress urge Senate action on election security GOP Senate candidate said Republicans have 'dual loyalties' to Israel MORE (R-Neb.). 

“BGR is a global powerhouse,” Lai said in a press release. “Their team is among the most prepared and trusted advocates in Washington.”

BGR is a bipartisan lobbying firm and public relations firm.

Lai joins other Trump alums at lobbying firms, including former senior director on the National Security Council Jennifer Arangio, who is the vice president of Federal Advocates, and former White House deputy press secretary Raj Shah, who co-lead the strategic communications division of Ballard Partners before moving to Fox.