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August 10, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter

Hannah Story Brown

Newsletter

ClimateExecutive Branch

A Janus-Faced Energy Bill Changes the Path Forward

We’re in a big moment, as the political landscape liquifies and reshapes beneath our feet. We at RDP expect to be spending significant time in coming months grappling with the vast impact of the 725-page Inflation Reduction Act and its tag-along coal baron wishlist (aka “permitting reform” bill), from the shifts in executive branch authority, funding, and personnel, to the bills’ diverging impacts on millions of people’s lives, and on ecosystems from Cook Inlet to the Appalachian Basin. Here’s a preview of some of the things we expect to focus on…

August 08, 2022 | Washington Monthly

Hannah Story Brown

Op-Ed 2020 Election/TransitionClimateDepartment of JusticeIndependent Agencies

Why Is Merrick Garland Sticking with Donald Trump on Climate Lawsuits?

It started with Boulder in early February. Then came Baltimore and San Mateo in April. Now Honolulu and Maui are the latest municipalities to overcome a crucial legal hurdle in their fight to make fossil fuel companies pay for their role in climate change. After years of obstruction, it looks like state courts will hear arguments from these cities—as well as several states—that big energy companies knowingly concealed and misrepresented the harms of their products, contributing to climate damages these regions face. Five federal appeals courts have green-lit suing the fossil fuel giants in state court, where these state and local governments have a better chance of prevailing. The stakes are massive: requiring fossil fuel companies to foot the bill for climate change–related damages to U.S. cities and states could easily run into the tens of billions.

August 04, 2022 | The American Prospect

Timi Iwayemi

Op-Ed Congressional OversightCryptocurrencyFinancial Regulation

Proposed Stablecoin Legislation Is Worse Than Nothing

Better still, the government could consider more aggressive action. Application of existing law would bring some stability to the stablecoin space, but there is one more simple and effective option: banning them outright. Stablecoins are an essential component of a deeply fraudulent industry that is financially and environmentally destructive. Guaranteeing their existence is an unnecessary risk.

August 04, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter

Daniel Boguslaw

Newsletter

Department of TransportationExecutive Branch

As Cabinet Members Head For Exits, Biden is Cruising For A Bruising

All signs point to Mayor Pete leaving the DOT station, a worrying trajectory as airline companies continue ripping off consumers while the former Mayor prepares a victory lap over the Department of Transportation’s long overdue announcement on a rule change that could drastically alter America’s air travel. Sneakily for Pete, this DOT rule won’t take effect until after the midterms, when he’ll kick his 2024 bid for high office into high gear according to rumors coursing through Washington. 

July 29, 2022 | The American Prospect

Hannah Story Brown Glenna Li

Op-Ed Congressional OversightEthics in GovernmentIRSRevolving Door

It’s Past Time to Replace IRS Chief Charles Rettig

Earlier this month, The New York Times broke the story that former FBI director James Comey and his former deputy director Andrew McCabe, both loathed and eventually fired by President Trump, also both underwent rare and intensive tax audits under the National Research Program, which studies tax compliance and calculates the “tax gap” (the difference between legally owed tax and what is actually paid). Out of around 154 million annual tax returns, the National Research Program selected just 5,000 tax returns in 2017 and 8,000 in 2019 to audit. Neither man knew the other had undergone the same audit until a Times reporter told them.

July 27, 2022 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter

Daniel Boguslaw

Newsletter

Ethics in GovernmentLarry Summers

NEW: Democrats To Constituents "We Can't Govern!"

As you sit here reading this, a hulking scrum of U.S. Senators is charging towards an underserved August recess, blundering out of Capital Hill exits to do even less work in luxury vacation homes, alpine escapes, and the sullied fundraising retreats of crypto bankers and oil barons. Having failed to pass significant legislation benefiting the American people this year, corporate representatives of both parties have have good reason to rest easy: across the bloodied playing field of the national mall lie the tattered and well-bruised remains of President Biden and his cabinet, a team not of rivals, but do gooders and no getters, struggling for relevance under the sepia-tinged banner of the musty Third Way, proudly proclaiming “We Can’t Govern!”

July 26, 2022

Timi Iwayemi

Letter CoronavirusIntellectual PropertyPharma

Activists to Biden: Share Walter Reed Army Vaccine With the World

If the Walter Reed vaccine proves effective against Covid-19 and its variants in further tests, it will be a vaccine wholly created by a public institution through use of public funds. Every aspect of the vaccine production process should be widely and freely shared to ensure globally distributed manufacturing. Widespread, equitable availability of effective vaccines at truly affordable prices would go a long way in achieving your stated goal of vaccinating the world.

July 26, 2022

Timi Iwayemi

Press Release

CoronavirusIntellectual PropertyPharma

Advocates to President Biden: Don’t Give Away New Publicly-Owned Coronavirus Vaccine Technology to Corporations

In advance of the White House Summit on the Future of COVID-19 Vaccines today, 29 groups including Public Citizen, Demand Progress and Revolving Door Project, a project of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, sent a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to ensure that pan coronavirus vaccine technology currently under development by the U.S. military remain public, and shared with the world.

July 26, 2022

Dorothy Slater Toni Aguilar Rosenthal

FOIA Request Climate

Fossil Fuel-Tied Legal Experts Are the Main Critics of a Climate Emergency Declaration

months of dedicated advocacy and both public and private pressure from environmental groups which insisted an emergency declaration was necessary to meet the moment, it seemed like Biden was finally ready to respond. But the declaration didn’t come, and in the days since, PoliticoPro’s EnergyWire and GreenWire have given spotlights to legal experts opining on the legal and political merits of such a declaration. 

July 20, 2022 | The American Prospect

Eleanor Eagan

Op-Ed GovernanceGovernment CapacityLarry Summers

Democrats Need to Fight for a Government That Works

Despite months of increasingly desperate horse trading and frantic whittling, Joe Manchin has narrowed the reconciliation package formerly known as Build Back Better to just a health care bill. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, meanwhile, appears set to torpedo popular, bipartisan antitrust bills on Big Tech’s behalf simply by refusing to bring them for a vote. And a once-sprawling bill on competitiveness and advanced manufacturing is now mostly an economic development subsidy to semiconductor manufacturers.

July 18, 2022 | Politico Europe

Eleanor Eagan Jeff Hauser

Op-Ed Ethics in Government

To withstand authoritarian threats, ethics standards must be stronger

Earlier this year, many breathed a sigh of relief, after France’s far-right opposition candidate Marine Le Pen’s bid for the country’s presidency went down in resounding defeat for the second time in five years.

That she was able to reprise her role as a second-round presidential candidate, however, let alone pick up close to enough votes, attests to a troubling fact: In France, and elsewhere, the threat from right-wing populist movements is mounting — not receding.