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April 09, 2021

Eleanor Eagan Timi Iwayemi

Blog Post

Department of CommerceIntellectual Property

Why You Should Care Who Leads the Patent and Trademark Office

As pressure mounts on the United States government to support waiving intellectual property (IP) protections on the COVID-19 vaccines at the World Trade Organization, progressives are closely monitoring the Biden administration’s appointments to agencies that impact intellectual property matters such as the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

April 08, 2021

Vishal Shankar

Blog Post

CabinetDepartment of JusticeEthics in GovernmentExecutive BranchRevolving DoorRight-Wing MediaTreasury Department

Biden Cabinet Confirmations Show Continued Political Potency Of Revolving Door Critiques

The prolonged confirmation fights for top Biden nominees proved one thing: Republicans will gleefully and cynically exploit anti-corruption critiques of Biden’s Cabinet for their own political purposes. The President must deny them this potent political weapon by closing corporate America’s revolving door for good.

April 08, 2021

Sion Bell

Blog Post

CoronavirusDepartment of CommerceIntellectual Property

Secretary Raimondo Must Act Quickly to Support the TRIPS Waiver

As the Biden administration continues to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo holds one of the most critical but under-appreciated roles for ensuring vaccine distribution. Indeed, the Commerce Secretary is a key player determining more generally whether America and the planet prioritize Big Pharma’s wealth or public health.

April 06, 2021

Eleanor Eagan

Blog Post

Independent Agencies

The State of Independent Agency Nominations - Update for April 2021

After over two months in office, President Joe Biden has a Cabinet. And his administration continues to announce names for the nearly 4000 other positions it will need to fill. With only a few exceptions, however, picks for one class of appointment — to independent agency boards — have been slow to emerge. The Biden administration undoubtedly faces many competing priorities, but these nominations must rise to the top.

April 02, 2021

Henry Burke

Blog Post

Government CapacityLabor

Biden's Budget Must Strengthen OSHA

Faced with a monumental workplace safety crisis in the form of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has largely failed to protect workers. Decades of declining staffing levels left this critical agency unable to adapt to extraordinary conditions and support workers across the country when they most needed it. During his campaign, Joe Biden vowed to be the “strongest labor president you’ve ever had.” As he prepares to release his budget proposal for his first full financial year in office, the opportunity is fast approaching for Biden to put federal money where his mouth is. Biden must follow through on his pro-worker promises by expanding funding and employment levels for OSHA and OSHA state affiliates (among a slate of other sorely needed pro-labor policies) so that they have the capacity to safeguard workplace safety in times of crisis and otherwise.

March 31, 2021

Andrea Beaty

Blog Post

Anti-MonopolyDepartment of Justice

Facebook Strengthens Defenses Against Break Up By Hiring Another DOJ Antitrust Official

Another day, another former antitrust enforcer defecting for the corporate world. In the months since President Joe Biden promised to pursue more aggressive antitrust enforcement, former antitrust officials have become an even hotter commodity in the private sector. Douglas Rathbun is the latest official to jump ship from the increasingly central world of antitrust enforcement to the more lucrative world of defending the status quo. Rathbun is a former counsel for the Antitrust Division’s Office of Legal Policy and has advised the Division on administrative and regulatory matters as well as guided nominees to senior leadership positions. According to his LinkedIn, Rathbun elected to cut out the BigLaw middleman and join a corporation directly: this month he joined Facebook to work on public policy.

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.