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June 07, 2021 | The American Prospect
Former Corporate Lawyer Set to Lead Army Corps of Engineers as Planet Sizzles
Michael Connor of WilmerHale has been appointed to run a surprisingly important agency in efforts to mitigate the climate crisis.
June 03, 2021 | The Insurgents
THE INSURGENTS PODCAST: Biden's Revolving Door ft. Max Moran
Our Personnel Team Research Director Max Moran joined Jordan Uhl and Rob Rousseau of The Insurgents Podcast to go over RDP’s 100 Day Report Card, some of Biden’s more problematic hires & appointments, and the long-term consequences of corporate representation in the White House.
June 03, 2021
Top Treasury Nominee Caught In A Cesspool Of Conflicts Of Interest
It’s hard to imagine a lawyer more conflicted on so much of the Treasury’s issue portfolio, and for such egregious reasons. A quick glance at MacBride’s own page on Davis Polk’s website is all it takes to see he cannot be trusted to act in the public’s interest.
June 02, 2021
Working Paper: New Federal Reserve Governors Must Deploy All of the Institution’s Tools to Advance the Public Interest
Over the course of the next eight months, Biden will have the opportunity to reshape the Federal Reserve Board of Governors with nominations for up to four of its seven seats, including the positions of Vice Chair of Supervision, Vice Chair, and Chair (listed in the order they will become vacant). In choosing nominees for these posts, it will be essential that Biden consider the full weight of the Federal Reserve’s immense power and select individuals who are ready and willing to deploy every ounce of it to advance the public interest.
June 01, 2021
How Revitalizing the IRS Can Help Save Democracy
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is tasked with ensuring Americans follow tax laws. The IRS not only audits everyday Americans and foreign nationals with US tax liabilities but also maintains the power to investigate wealthy individuals and corporations for tax avoidance or other forms of malfeasance. Despite its crucial role in enforcing federal taxes laws (or, more aptly, because of this role), Republican austerity has systematically dismantled the IRS over the past decade.
May 28, 2021
Hobbled FTC Lacks Budget To Combat Corporate Buying Spree
Progressives have been encouraged by President Biden’s choices of anti-monopoly leadership in Lina Khan, Tim Wu, and (potentially) Jonathan Kanter. But in the interregnum between personnel announcements and actual confirmations, corporations are getting as many transactions done now as possible. And while the Biden Administration seems on the precipice of reining in the power of Big Tech and other monopolists soon, the FTC, one of the two agencies charged with enforcing antitrust law, continues to be hobbled by chronic underfunding.
May 28, 2021
How the DOJ Can Federally Document Every Fatal Case of Police Misconduct
The Arrest-Related Deaths (ARD) program — a federal tracking system to document cases of police homicide amid other manners of death emanating from the arrest process & the police interaction at large — held massive potential to further police oversight goals. Not only does re-establishing the ARD program require no legislation, but a template for a revised ARD program has been underway for over 6 years. The pilot study reconstructing the ARD’s methodology yielded a blueprint mapping out how the relaunched ARD program could operate by a hybrid system of open-source media mining and law enforcement agency surveying. Reactivating the ARD program in its contemporary version is one of the easiest & speediest proposals that the Biden administration & Garland’s DOJ can actualize on the matter of criminal justice reform — so, why aren’t they?
May 27, 2021 | The American Prospect
Justice Department Shot Through With Corporate Influence
The U.S. government is involved in hundreds of court cases each year, most of which are not followed closely. But the baseline assumption is that the government is defending the public interest and holding criminals accountable, even when most aren’t watching. Unfortunately, in Merrick Garland’s Justice Department, that is not uniformly the case. Key acting officials, drawn from the halls of corporate power, are riddled with conflicts of interest that are already affecting their ability to protect the public. If the Justice Department is to serve all Americans rather than bolster individual fortunes and entrench corporate power, Merrick Garland must stop elevating corporate attorneys who have gotten rich fighting on corporate America’s behalf.
May 21, 2021
Revolver Spotlight: Brian Netter
Brian Netter, a corporate attorney who represented big business in wage theft cases and litigated against workers who sued companies for mismanaging their retirement funds, was just appointed to the Department of Justice.
May 20, 2021
What Biden & Garland’s DOJ Must Do to Monitor & Curb Police Misconduct
Policing, anti-black, anti-immigrant, ableist, and capitalist at its core, was designed to be outside of the scope of the law. The deployment of federal law enforcement officers in unmarked vans to abduct and detain Black Lives Matter protestors in Portland, Oregan during last summer’s national uprising over police killings demonstrates the extreme nature of rogue American policing. Police prerogative power, as the expression of the state’s legalized violence to enforce public docility at its will, is embedded in US governance. Couple that with qualified immunity, police contracts & unions, police bill of rights, and whatnot, law enforcement are shielded from disciplinary actions.
May 19, 2021
Revolver Spotlight: Ellisen Turner
If appointed, Turner would be a transparent and flagrant case study in the workings of the revolving door, which means he would be right in line with the IP orthodoxy PTO has upheld.
May 19, 2021
Biden Hired State Dept. Official From Eugene Scalia's Law Firm, New Report Shows
As the report explores, Gibson Dunn’s ties to the Republican Party run back to the Reagan era.
May 18, 2021
2020 Election/TransitionCabinetEthics in GovernmentExecutive BranchRevolving Door
Executive Branch Financial Disclosures
The Revolving Door Project will be tracking these disclosures and flagging important revelations revealed by the OGE to ensure high level political appointees are not financially beholden to special interests they may regulate in government.
May 17, 2021
Revolver Spotlight: Howard Shelanski
Shelanski, Obama’s second OIRA administrator, now represents monopolies like Facebook and Tyson Foods. His regulatory skepticism and disdain for the emerging antitrust movement would make him a disastrous pick for any role in the Biden administration.
May 17, 2021
Revolver Spotlight: Kevin Rhodes
When choosing the next PTO director, the Biden administration should rule out those who have a history of prioritizing profits and corporate interests over public health and safety. One such individual is Kevin Rhodes, an ally of Big Pharma who has vigorously defended efforts to keep drug prices high. His current employer, 3M, has abused its monopoly on the military earplug market to sell overpriced and faulty products to veterans. This should be immediately disqualifying for any future PTO director. Here are a few of the most alarming aspects of Kevin Rhodes’s career: