With Theodoric Meyer and Daniel Lippman
FACEBOOK HIRES CRYPTOCURRENCY LOBBYIST: Facebook hired John Collins, a partner at FS Vector, to lobby on blockchain policy, according to a disclosure. The hiring comes as the social media giant makes an aggressive push to quell lawmakers’ concerns over its proposed cryptocurrency project, Libra, after it went public with the endeavor earlier this year. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), who chairs the House Financial Services panel’s subcommittee on national security, international development and monetary policy, requested in a letter last week the Treasury Department examine “every phase of development” as Facebook unfurls the digital currency.
— Collins, who previously served as head of policy for digital currency exchange Coinbase, joins a growing crop of lobbyists and lawyers representing Facebook on Libra issues, including the Sternhell Group, Cypress Group and law firm Davis Polk, which will help handle regulatory concerns.
MORE NEW BUSINESS: Nike hired Capitol Counsel to lobby on intellectual property protection, trade issues and data protection, according to a disclosure. The apparel and footwear company also retains Cornerstone Government Affairs, Ogilvy Government Relations, Empire Consulting Group, GrayRobinson and DiNino Associates (as a subcontractor to Cornerstone). British telecommunications company Vodafone hired a pair of lobbyists at the Signal Group to advocate on 5G deployment. And the Hess Corporation hired Holland & Knight to lobby on pipeline reauthorizations, Coast Guard funding and environmental issues.
DRINKER BIDDLE LOBBYISTS DECAMP TO POWERS: Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville has nabbed a pair of attorneys from Drinker Biddle & Reath’s District Policy Group. Julie Allen and Jeremy Scott have joined Powers as senior directors of government affairs and have brought over eight former clients with them, including the International Myeloma Foundation, Integra LifeSciences and the National Association of Specialty Pharmacy.
HOW U.S. TRAVEL SPENT RECESS: The U.S. Travel Association hit the road last week for events with Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) in St. Louis and Ohio Reps. Steve Stivers (R), Joyce Beatty (D) and Troy Balderson (R) in Columbus, Ohio. The trade group is trying to drum up support for reauthorizing Brand USA, which promotes the U.S. as a travel destination. (Blunt introduced a bill that would reauthorize the program.) The trade group is also pushing to reauthorize the visa waiver program and increase infrastructure investment.
— But the trade group’s Midwestern tour was as much about spotlighting the travel industry in general as pressing for specific policy priorities. President Donald Trump’s trade wars focused attention on manufacturing, retail, agriculture and other sectors hurt by the tariffs imposed by the administration — but the travel industry, not so much. “We have just as much of a significant economic impact as those industries do,” said Tori Barnes, the trade group’s executive vice president of public affairs and policy, in an interview. The tour plans to head elsewhere in the country in the fall.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Worried you missed out on big developments in the influence world while sipping pina coladas on the beach? PI has you covered. Here’s a rundown of some of last week’s biggest news:
— “Vin Weber, the former Minnesota congressman who has provided guidance to Republican presidential candidates and corporate executives, resigned his position Friday as a partner in a prominent consulting firm amid ongoing questions about lobbying work he did for Ukrainian interests” in connection with Paul Manafort, The Washington Post’s Tom Hamburger reported. “In a letter to the chief executive of Mercury LLC, where he has worked since 2011, Weber wrote that continued attention on his Ukrainian work ‘has become a distraction for me and for the important work that Mercury is doing.’”
— Former Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom lawyer Greg Craig took the stand for seven hours over two days last week in his trial in which he has been charged with deliberately misleading the Justice Department about his work on a legal project for the government of Ukraine several years ago, POLITICO’s Josh Gerstein writes. The jury is expected to begin deliberations this week following closing statements from the prosecution and defense.
— Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei has contracted a trio of lobbyists at Squire Patton Boggs — Edward Newberry, Jack Deschauer and Jeffrey Turner — as the firm continues to bolster its presence in Washington amid increased pressure from the Trump administration, POLITICO’s Steven Overly reported.
— Federal Election Commission Vice Chairman Matthew Petersen last week announced his intent to retire, leaving the watchdog “one person short of a quorum and thus unable to take on some of its most basic actions, including holding board meetings, starting audits, making new rules and levying fines for campaign finance violations,” The New York Times’ Shane Goldmacher writes.
— POLITICO’s Nancy Scola and Margaret Harding McGill took a look at efforts by the News Media Alliance, a trade group that represents newspapers and digital news outlets, to learn from their European counterparts in their ongoing battle to claw back power from Silicon Valley. “The European publishers have been ahead of us,” David Chavern, the group’s chief executive, said in an interview. “The biggest lesson learned is that you need collective action by the publishers.”
— “Sarah Huckabee Sanders, President Donald Trump’s former press secretary, has held discussions with Teneo, a global consulting firm started by former Clinton aides, about working together to advise corporate clients about the Trump administration, according to a former Teneo employee and two other people familiar with the matter,” POLITICO’s Daniel Lippman reported. Sanders, who is also considering a gubernatorial run in Arkansas, “would serve as an independent contractor and would not be employed by Teneo, these people said.”
— The U.S. Chamber of Commerce late last month launched an 18-month restoration of its nearly 97-year-old headquarters. The full exterior of the historic building will undergo restoration during the project, the Chamber said in a release.
— General Motors has hired Elizabeth Reicherts as vice president of external affairs based in Washington, effective Sept. 15. Reicherts, who previously was vice president and head of government affairs at Siemens, will be responsible for managing GM’s state, local and federal government affairs teams.
— The Telecommunications Industry Association has hired Patrick Lozada as director of global policy. He previously was a director at the Albright Stonebridge Group.
— Steven Fabrizio is out as global general counsel for the Motion Picture Association of America, POLITICO’s Steven Overly reports, “after he was charged with the sexual abuse and blackmail of a woman he met through a dating site.” Daniel Robbins, the group’s senior vice president and associate general counsel, will be his interim replacement.
— Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld has hired Justin Towles as a senior policy adviser in the firm’s communications and information technology practice. He joins the firm from Ascension Global, a management consulting firm he co-founded.
— Subject Matter has hired Yolanda Brignoni as vice president of client services. She previously was strategic communications director for health, integrated communications and marketing at AARP.
— The Republican data and analytics firm Applecart has hired a veteran Democrat, Joe Shafer, as its new president, POLITICO’s Daniel Strauss reported last week. “Shafer, who will run the firm’s political and advocacy division, spent years working as a top operative on Democratic gubernatorial races.”
— Kaya Singleton has joined H&R Block as director of federal government relations. She previously was on the federal government affairs team at the Entertainment Software Association.
— The University of Kansas has promoted Jack Cline to associate vice chancellor for federal relations. He previously was director of federal relations.
— Evelyn Stauffer is joining Home Depot’s government affairs team this month, POLITICO’s Dan Diamond reported last week. She previously was communications director for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families.
— Brett Shumate has joined Jones Day as a partner in the firm’s Government Regulation Practice, which is co-chaired by former White House counsel Don McGahn. Shumate previously was a deputy assistant attorney general at the Justice Department.
— United Technologies has hired Marcus Jadotte as vice president of federal government relations, Playbook reported last week. He previously was vice president of public affairs at AAR Corp.
— Jo-Anne Sears has joined Velocity Government Relations, a firm specializing in aerospace, defense and space policy, as a partner.
— The Information Technology Industry Council has hired Margaret McCarthy as senior director of government affairs, POLITICO’s Morning Tech reports today. She previously was the executive director of Mobile Future.
— Leslie Miller, previously the vice president of public policy for Google, will become the new head of global policy for Google-owned YouTube, Morning Tech reports.
— Caitlin Brosseau has joined TripAdvisor as senior director of U.S. public policy, Playbook reports. She previously was senior director of government relations and public policy at Pandora.
— The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Corporate Citizenship Center has hired Yagmur Cosar as communications director. She previously was vice president at Burson Cohn & Wolfe.
— The Association of Equipment Manufacturers has hired Wade Balkonis as grassroots advocacy manager. He previously was federal government relations manager for Walgreens.
— America’s Health Insurance Plans has hired Nicole Eynard as vice president of public affairs and campaigns, POLITICO Pulse scooped this morning. Eynard previously worked at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
— Lauren Silvis has joined Tempus to lead its new Washington office, Pulse also scooped, where she will oversee regulatory, public policy and government affairs matters. Silvis most recently served as chief of staff to former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb.
— The American Public Transportation Association has hired TJ Doyle as director of advocacy communications, POLITICO’s Morning Transportation reports. He previously was managing director of executive and digital communications for the National Association of Realtors.
— Kate Goodloe is joining BSA | The Software Alliance as director of policy, focusing on privacy issues, Morning Tech reports. She previously was a senior associate at Covington & Burling.
— Ashley Simmons, the former vice president of external affairs and communications for the Telecommunications Industry Association, has left to start her own communications consulting firm, Morning Tech reports.
— Daria Dawson is joining PL+US Action as director of political affairs, Playbook reports. She previously was director of strategic engagement for California Sen. Kamala Harris’ presidential campaign.
— The Institute of International Bankers has hired Meghan Milloy as director of strategic communications. She previously was a fellow at the Robert Bosch Foundation in Germany.
— Katherine Flocken is joining Allon Advocacy as a senior policy adviser, Playbook reported last week. She previously was a senior government relations specialist at Arent Fox.
— Jared Melamed Dubnow has joined the Hawthorn Group as vice president. He previously worked for former Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner’s election campaign and in various positions in state government.
Defending the New Democrat Majority Fund (New Democrat Coalition Action Fund, Reps. Angie Craig, Lizzie Fletcher, Susie Lee, Colin Allred and Sharice Davids)
John Lewis House Victory Fund (Rep. John Lewis, DCCC)
Judge Carter Victory Fund (Rep. John Carter, Conservative & Republican Together Equals Results PAC, Republican Party of Texas, NRCC)
The Order of the Mantic Syndicate (Friends of Commitee Elect Matthew Gullo [sic])
Win in 2020 (Republican Federal Committee of Pennsylvania, Republican Party of Minnesota-Federal, NY Republican Federal Campaign Committee, Republican Party of Texas, Republican Party of Iowa, California Republican Party Federal Acct., NRCC)
1619 PAC (Super PAC)
Americans for Common Sense Change (Super PAC)
Break the Stigma (PAC)
Break the Stigma Super PAC (PAC)
Citizens United for Constitutional Government (PAC)
Conservatives Against Rinos (PAC)
Demanding Oath of Office National Enforcement (PAC)
Doral is a Shithole Country [Club] (PAC)
Doral is a Shithole Country [Club] [with Bedbugs] (PAC)
Farrah’s List (PAC)
Fems for Dems PAC (PAC)
Financial Services Forum Political Action Committee (PAC)
Flip the Senate PAC (Super PAC)
Free and Fair Democracy PAC (PAC)
Gone with Guns (PAC)
GRIT PAC (Super PAC)
ImaginePAC.com (Super PAC)
Just Good Government PAC (Super PAC)
MAGA United PAC (PAC)
One America Strong PAC (PAC)
Our Shaved Values PAC (Super PAC)
PTC Therapeutics, Inc. Political Action Committee (PTC-PAC) (PAC)
Real Deal Tarheels (Super PAC)
Register Georgia Action, Inc. (Super PAC)
SpankTheDonkeyPAC.com (Super PAC)
Take Back TX-11 Nominee Fund 2020 (PAC)
Take Back TX-22 Nominee Fund 2020 (PAC)
Take Back TX-23 Nominee Fund 2020 (PAC)
Take the Power PAC (PAC)
The Diaspora Health Political Action Committee (PAC)
We Voted Super PAC (Super PAC)
WI-07 Republican Nominee Fund (PAC)
Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld: Southwest Research Institute
Arent Fox LLP: American Political Science Association
Ballard Partners: Baker Donelson (on Behalf of Ballad Health)
Ballard Partners: Bio-Tech Consulting Inc.
Ballard Partners: BTR Energy
Basanite, Inc.: Basanite, Inc.
Capitol Counsel, LLC: Nike, Inc.
Cornerstone Government Affairs, Inc.: Board of Commissioners of Lowndes County
Dentons US, LLP: Tobacco 21
Edgepoint, LLC: Karsman, McKenzie & Hart; on behalf of Relvas v. Islamic Republic of Iran
FBB Federal Relations: U.S. Soccer Federation
FS Vector LLC: Facebook, Inc.
Galileo Consulting Group, Inc.: AIQ Solutions
Greenberg Traurig, LLP: Allison Transmission, Inc.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP: Donohoe Companies, Inc.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP: The Towers Industries, PBC
Hannegan Landau Poersch & Rosenbaum Advocacy, LLC: Ferrero USA, Inc.
HCA Healthcare, Inc.: HCA Healthcare, Inc.
Holland & Hart LLP: Ahtna, Inc.
Holland & Knight LLP: Hess Corporation
Husch Blackwell Strategies: Diamond Pet Foods Inc.
J M Burkman & Associates: Greg Wahl
J M Burkman & Associates: Kathy Weygandt
JBS Communications, LLC: Flash Steelworks, LLC
Jeffrey J. Kimbell and Associates: Catalyst Pharmaceuticals
Jocelyn Hong & Associates: Benchmark Electronics, Inc.
Jocelyn Hong & Associates: Institute for Integrative Nutrition
Jocelyn Hong & Associates: Manatee County (FL), Board of County Commissioners
Jocelyn Hong & Associates: Manatee County Port Authority
Kasirer LLC: Hotel Association of New York City, Inc.
King & Spalding LLP: Coalition for Acetone Fair Trade (Ad Hoc Coalition)
Miller & Wenhold Capitol Strategies: International Precious Metals Institute
Potomac South, LLC: City of McAllen Tx
Potomac South, LLC: ScanTech Sciences, Inc
Potomac South, LLC: Twin Pines Minerals, LLC
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: Are You Dense Advocacy, Inc.
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: Association of Rehabilitation Nurses
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: Global SuperTanker Services LLC
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: Integra LifeSciences Corporation
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: International Myeloma Foundation
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: National Association of Specialty Pharmacy
Powers Pyles Sutter & Verville, P.C.: Preeclampsia Foundation
Rubicon Advisors, LLC: Heritage Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Signal Group Consulting, LLC: Vodafone Group Services Limited
Taras, LLC: Courtesy Aircraft, Inc.
Tarplin, Downs & Young, LLC: Remedy BPCI Partners, LLC
The Federal Group, Inc.: American Association of Birth Centers
The KPM Group DC LLC: Portola Pharmaceuticals
The Manning Group, LLC: Mothers Against Drunk Driving
The Manning Group, LLC: Safe Kids Worldwide
The Preston Group, LLC: Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation
Thomas Kahn: Cormac Group on behalf of the Foundation for Human Rights in Cuba
Van Heuvelen Strategies, LLC: Bartlett & West, Inc.
Van Ness Feldman, LLP: U.S. Soccer Federation
Wiley Rein LLP: American Institute of Steel Construction
Williams and Jensen, PLLC: Ripple Labs, Inc.
CC Law & Policy: Providence Insurance Partners LLC
Digital Asset Affairs, LLC: Digital Asset Affairs, LLC
Forbes-Tate: H&R Block
JD E Commerce America Limited: JD E Commerce America Limited
Miller & Wenhold Capitol Strategies: Precious Metals Association Of North America (Fka Silver USers Association)
Mr. Richard Krolewski: National Precast Concrete Association
Mr. Theodore (Ted) Jones: Biomedical Research Foundation of Northwest Louisiana
Mr. Theodore (Ted) Jones: Ochsner Health System, Inc.
Mr. Toby Short: Charleston County
Ogilvy Government Relations: AFLAC
Ogilvy Government Relations: CarePoint Health
Ogilvy Government Relations: Signet Jewelers Limited
The Petrizzo Group, Inc.: Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
Wiley Rein LLP: Alorica