Bennet reintroduces bill to ban lawmakers from becoming lobbyists

Bennet reintroduces bill to ban lawmakers from becoming lobbyists
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Sen. Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetBiden leads 2020 pack in congressional endorsements Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for week two of impeachment trial Impeachment throws curveball in Iowa to sidelined senators MORE (D-Colo.), a 2020 White House hopeful, reintroduced legislation on Thursday to shut the "revolving door" between Congress and K Street and ban lawmakers from ever becoming lobbyists.

Bennet, who has introduced the Close the Revolving Door Act in every Congress since 2010, is introducing it with Sens. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerDemocrats feel political momentum swinging to them on impeachment Senate Republicans confident they'll win fight on witnesses Tensions between McConnell and Schumer run high as trial gains momentum MORE (R-Colo.) and Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterDemocrats cry foul over Schiff backlash Democrats feel political momentum swinging to them on impeachment Nadler gets under GOP's skin MORE (D-Mont.) this year.

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“Americans should be confident that their elected leaders go to Washington to represent them, not to audition for high-paying lobbying jobs for special interests,” Bennet said in a statement. 

The bill would also restrict staff from lobbying for six years after leaving Capitol Hill. Currently, staffers can’t lobby their boss for one year, and leadership and committee staffers have longer restrictions. The measure would also ban lobbyists from becoming staffers for members or committees they lobbied for six years.

Bennet’s bill would also create a website, Lobbyists.gov, for reporting lobbying activities and require lobbying entities to report the work of nonlobbyist employees who are former members or former senior congressional staff, including descriptions of their job responsibilities. 

Other 2020 Democratic presidential candidates have been vowing to get tough on the lobbying industry and recently released campaign proposals. 

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenPoll: Sanders leads Biden by 9 points in Iowa Poll: Biden leads in Iowa ahead of caucuses The Memo: Impeachment dominates final Iowa sprint MORE (D-Mass.), for example, has proposed a tax on annual lobbying expenditures of at least $500,000 a year, new definitions of what constitutes a lobbyist and bans on lobbying for foreign entities.

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersPoll: Sanders leads Biden by 9 points in Iowa Poll: Biden leads in Iowa ahead of caucuses The Memo: Impeachment dominates final Iowa sprint MORE (I-Vt.) has also proposed a ban on corporate funding for conventions, as well as a lobbying ban on former members of Congress and senior staffers.

Warren and Sanders were among 12 Democratic presidential candidates on the debate stage Tuesday night in Ohio. Bennet did not qualify for the debate.