Apple hires NFL lobbyist for top DC role

Apple hires NFL lobbyist for top DC role
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Apple has hired the National Football League’s top lobbyist to run its policy apparatus in the Americas, a spokesman confirmed on Thursday.

Politico first reported Thursday morning that the Silicon Valley behemoth had recruited Cynthia Hogan, who for almost two years has worked to beef up the league’s lobbying machine in Washington amid several high-profile controversies.

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She will start later this month and work under Lisa Jackson, the former Environmental Protection Agency chief who is now the company’s vice president for environment, policy and social initiatives.

Fred Sainz, a spokesman for Apple, confirmed her hiring. An NFL spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment. 

She started at the league as it was reeling from the botched handling of a domestic violence case involving then-Baltimore Ravens player Ray Rice. She was previously an aide to Vice President Biden and, after departing from the White House, a private consultant. She had been in Biden’s orbit for years, helping him craft and pass the Violence Against Women Act.

She now joins Apple as the company stakes out a more prominent position in policy debates.

It is coming off a battle with the FBI after refusing to help the law enforcement agency access encrypted data on an iPhone used by one of the San Bernardino, Calif., attackers. The FBI ultimately said it had purchased a tool to access the data itself, and the government dropped its legal request that Apple write code to bypass the phone's security.