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June 22, 2021
The State of Independent Agency Nominations - Update for Spring 2021
Over 10 percent of Biden’s presidential term has passed. Yet, despite notable accomplishments on COVD-19 relief, the Biden administration is still far from having maximized its potential impact, particularly when it comes to executive branch power. Nowhere is that more evident than at independent federal agencies, where Biden’s agenda has barely even begun to take root. With 10 percent of his term gone, Democrats have secured a majority on just three new independent agency boards.
June 21, 2021
Biden’s Climate Finance Convening Is Necessarily Incomplete Without Fully-Staffed Agencies
On the occasion of President Biden’s meeting with top financial regulators to discuss the health of the financial system, including climate-related risk, Revolving Door Project Executive Director Jeff Hauser issued the following statement:
June 15, 2021
Other Bold Nominees Must Follow Khan To DOJ And FTC
Lina Khan alone cannot bring in a new age of American trust-busting. Biden still has yet to name his assistant attorney general for antitrust halfway through his first year in office.
June 14, 2021
BlackRock’s New Hire Embodies The Polluting Giant’s Revolving Door Regime
Asset management giant BlackRock most recently made the news for buying up huge tracts of U.S. housing stock to become, essentially, a massive corporate landlord at the expense of all the rest of us. (Seems like they are learning a thing or two from private equity firm Blackstone, to which they formerly belonged, which is infamous for its predatory and downright evil infiltration of the housing market.)
June 10, 2021 | American Prospect
Jerome Powell Went Easy On Wall Street
Just as a president shouldn’t only be judged on whether or not they started a war, Fed chairs shouldn’t only be judged on whether they raised or lowered interest rates. That’s their most salient power, but they have other, more complex ways of affecting our lives. Financial regulation is one of the most important of these, and it’s one on which current Fed chairman Jerome Powell has failed badly.
June 09, 2021
One Shockingly Easy Step For Government Transparency: Staff Pages
Anyone who’s ever filed a Freedom of Information Act request can tell you that the federal bureaucracy is shockingly opaque despite. This has real consequences for the public’s understanding of what their government actually does every day. Almost all public records requests require watchdogs to specifically identify documents and personnel they are interested in, often without knowing if those documents even exist or if those personnel even still work for the government. This poses a conundrum, however: how can watchdogs know what or whose records to request if they don’t even know who works in a department?
June 08, 2021 | The New Republic
Merrick Garland Has Become Donald Trump's Legal Protector
On several key matters, Garland’s DOJ has concealed the full extent of Trump’s wrongdoing; kept thousands of immigrants from obtaining greencards, while flooding the immigration system with Trump-selected judges; expanded the scope of police power; ensured oil and gas profits for decades to come; and explicitly protected one of Trump’s most hated Cabinet secretaries from accountability.
June 08, 2021
E. Jean Carroll Decision Highlights Garland's Systemic Protection Of Trump Policies
Let’s be clear: there is absolutely no compelling reason Garland has to maintain the racist, misogynistic, planet-destroying, and corporatist legal stances of the Trump administration.
June 07, 2021
Revolver Spotlight: Leslie Caldwell
Leslie Caldwell, a top corporate criminal defense partner at BigLaw giant Latham & Watkins, is in the running for a U.S. Attorney job under Biden. Her record championing draconian anti-hacking laws and helping big corporations evade accountability for white-collar crimes should preclude her from any role in the Biden administration.
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.