About Us

The Revolving Door Project (RDP) was created in order to scrutinize executive branch appointees to ensure they use their office to serve the broad public interest, rather than to entrench corporate power or seek personal advancement. In recent years our work has expanded to include monitoring how corporate and billionaire influence distorts coverage of economic issues in the media, the administration of law in our courts, and policymaking by various state constitutional officers. 

The insight that led to our creation was that many of the deep rules that govern our rigged economy are written within the executive branch and outside the purview of most of civil society. From the semi-independent bureaus of the Treasury Department (the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the IRS) to the Federal Reserve, OMB, FTC, and beyond, executive branch personnel play a significant role in determining the fundamental rules that govern our economy.

The Revolving Door Project educates civil society in order to counteract the advantage that Wall Street and corporate America have in this rule-writing process. We do this by alerting and educating the media and activists when hardworking people are being taken advantage of and clarifying by whom. 

If we want the executive branch to write rules that structure the economy away from rent extraction and in the direction of greater economic equality, we need to ensure the right people hold key executive branch positions such as Treasury Secretary and SEC Commissioner. The executive branch needs to empower dedicated civil servants rather than self-interested people rotating between relatively short stints in government and longer stints in the very industries they’re supposed to regulate. And when the executive branch fails to police the forces exacerbating economic inequality, Congress must provide prompt and certain oversight.

RDP’s watchdog role also extends to the federal judiciary, state constitutional officers, and the news media, all of which are afflicted by corporate capture via means both obvious and subtle. Wherever corruption is present, RDP’s core belief remains the same: Who has power matters, and so does who understands how power is actually exercised. That’s why it is crucial to call out outlets and commentators who poison the information ecosystem with discredited corporate-friendly neoliberal orthodoxy, judges who take cues from corporate America, and state constitutional officers who work outside the spotlight on behalf of the rich and against the broader public interest.

Only a populace that has been educated about how power is truly wielded will ever be able to reclaim the power that it ought to possess in a democracy. It’s our job to make sure that the grassroots can get into the game.