Boucher joins AT&T-backed advocacy group

Bruce Mehlman, the co-chairman of IIA, told The Hill in an interview that Boucher's "record of independence and of integrity add immeasurably to the weight of what he has to say and to the importance with which his policy opinions are treated."

Mehlman said Boucher will play a strategic role in shaping IIA's stances but suggested that the gig won't mean Boucher has to rubber-stamp all of IIA's pro-industry views. 

"We hope and expect he'll agree with us when he agrees with us, and work to convince folks at IIA when he sees things differently," Mehlman said. "He's not in a spokesman role. The IIA will value his input in helping shape our opinions and benefit from his voice when the organization comes out where he believes it should come out."

Mehlman said Boucher will have a chance to "call things like he sees things."

Boucher will take on the leadership job while he also assumes a new role working for the law firm Sidley Austin.