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March 30, 2021

Miranda Litwak

Newsletter

2020 Election/Transition

REVOLVING DOOR SPOTLIGHT 3/30/21

Welcome to our supplemental newsletter, the Revolving Door Spotlight. Here, we review the open jobs in the Biden administration we have our eyes on, as well as the would-be revolvers vying for those jobs. To learn more about which agencies and positions specific industries are seeking to influence, as well as the industry-tied individuals who might seek to lead them, check out our Industry Agenda reports here and our Personnel Map here.

March 29, 2021 | The American Prospect

Eleanor Eagan Elias Alsbergas

Op-Ed

Ethics in GovernmentExecutive BranchRevolving Door

Toward a Conflict-of-Interest-Free West Wing

The latest batch of White House financial disclosures revealed close ties between top Biden Administration officials and corporate titans in Big Tech, Big Oil, and Big Pharma. Eleanor Eagan and Elias Alsbergas explain why these disclosures reveal the need for the Biden White House to adopt stronger ethics disclosures and mandate total divestment from potential conflicts of interest.

March 23, 2021

Vishal Shankar

Blog Post

ClimateExecutive BranchForeign PolicyRevolving DoorTreasury Department

Revolver Spotlight: Elizabeth Rosenberg

Elizabeth Rosenberg, a lesser-known Obama-era official, is being considered to lead the Treasury Department’s Terrorism and Financial Intelligence unit. Her record designing painful economic sanctions, supporting fossil fuel industry-friendly policies, and helping powerful corporations gain close access to the highest levels of government is cause for alarm, writes Vishal Shankar.

March 22, 2021 | Democracy Journal

Jeff Hauser David Segal

Op-Ed

2020 Election/TransitionExecutive Branch

Building Back Better (Than Expected)

The nominations that President Biden has made thus far serve as a guidebook to the years ahead. By analyzing those picks, we see a vivid picture of where we can expect strong executive actions to take on the corporate monopolies and polluters choking the American economy—and where we can anticipate division between the progressive base and corporatist establishment actors.

March 18, 2021

Press Release

CoronavirusExecutive BranchForeign Policy

Congress Must Examine Biden Admin Possibly Trading Vaccines For Anti-Migration Enforcement

The Revolving Door Project is outraged by yesterday’s news that the Biden administration has been pressuring the Mexican government into turning away migrants at the Mexico-Guatemala border. While this Trump style initiative would be appalling on its own, we are additionally concerned about the possibility that President Biden may have bartered millions of doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to achieve his anti-migration goals.

March 17, 2021

Elias Alsbergas Vishal Shankar

Report

2020 Election/TransitionDefenseExecutive BranchForeign PolicyRevolving Door

The Industry Agenda: Military-Industrial Complex

A powerful collection of weapons manufacturers and defense contractors are shaping American foreign policy by lobbying policymakers and funding hawkish think tanks to keep U.S. defense spending the highest in the world. Their influence-peddling efforts prioritize the defense industry’s profits over countless lives and pressing domestic priorities like universal healthcare. Our Elias Alsbergas and Vishal Shankar explain how the military-industrial complex seeks to influence the executive branch and which defense industry allies are seeking jobs in the Biden Administration.

March 17, 2021

Newsletter

2020 Election/TransitionGovernment CapacityIndependent Agencies

The Financial Conflicts Lurking Around the Corner

Almost two months after he took office, Biden’s Cabinet is nearing completion. Nearly all of the six remaining spots seem set to be filled in relatively short order. Now, with the senior-most leadership in place, more permanent hiring for other political roles is likely to accelerate. And with that in mind progressives and good government groups are engaging in another push to ensure that public interest-minded officials populate all levels of political leadership. On Thursday, 46 groups sent a letter to Chief of Staff Ron Klain asking that new hires at the Justice Department not hail from BigLaw and that those with connections to firms who have already been hired recuse from policy and personnel decisions that could impact former clients. When asked whether the Biden administration would heed that call, White House spokesperson Jen Psaki was noncommittal. That’s disappointing — demanding recusals from BigTech and BigLaw tied hires should be a no-brainer (and, in fact, it’s already a step down from our preferred solution, which is not to appoint them at all) — but, if there’s one thing the administration should know by now, it’s that we’ll not be letting them off the hook when it comes to conflicts of interest.