Ethics in Government

September 06, 2023 | The American Prospect

Timi Iwayemi

Op-Ed Ethics in GovernmentIntellectual PropertyPatent and Trademark OfficeRevolving Door

The Revolving Door Threatens the Integrity of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

More problematically, conflicts of interest have plagued the USPTO, including at the highest levels. Trump-era USPTO director Andrei Iancu was far too cozy with patent law firms while he served in government. Iancu came in via the revolving door from patent litigation firm Irell & Manella, where he earned $4,733,748 as a managing partner in the year before he was nominated, and went out the door and back to the firm when his term was up. He is now a partner in Sullivan & Cromwell’s patent practice.

September 06, 2023 | Revolving Door Project Newsletter

KJ Boyle

Newsletter 2024 ElectionEthics in GovernmentIndependent AgenciesJudiciaryLabor

Cracking Down on Judicial Corruption & Celebrating Pro-Labor Rulemaking

With Labor Day now behind us, Hot Labor Summer has come to a scorching end, but the labor movement is alive and well with several heavyweight bouts looming on the horizon. This transition time is the perfect moment to take stock of the Biden administration’s labor allyship — applauding recent rulemaking efforts, highlighting some shortcomings, and previewing some potential labor strikes coming this fall.

September 01, 2023

Ananya Kalahasti Will Royce

Press Release Ethics in GovernmentHealthJudiciaryPharma

RELEASE: Judge Invested in Big Pharma Shouldn't Try Case on Big Pharma Profiteering

The Revolving Door Project’s Ananya Kalahasti and Will Royce released the following statement regarding the US Chamber of Commerce’s lawsuit regarding the Inflation Reduction Act’s Medicare prescription drug negotiation program, and a financial conflict of interest regarding the judge in the Southern District of Ohio.

August 29, 2023

Chris Lewis

Blog Post Congressional OversightDepartment of Homeland SecurityEthics in Government

The Inaction Of The Obama Administration Got Us Here In Florida

A few days ago, a white supremacist murdered three innocent Black people at a Dollar General store in Jacksonville. Like the shooter in Buffalo and Dylann Roof in Charleston, he had a manifesto that espoused white nationalist talking points and conspiracy theories. The prevalence of racist attacks in recent years underscores the alarming rise of right-wing domestic terrorism in the United States. The problem I want to address is: Who at the highest levels of government is to blame for this?

August 17, 2023 | The American Prospect

Timi Iwayemi

Op-Ed 2024 ElectionEthics in GovernmentFinancial RegulationGovernanceRevolving Door

The CFTC Ponders Gambling on Democracy’s Future

As long as one party remains totally united behind a man who attempted to overthrow the government by force, was the most corrupt president in American history, and undermines the public’s faith in elections at every turn, the future of American democratic self-government is at risk.

Sounds scary. But what if I told you this was a great opportunity for fun and profit? Silicon Valley–backed startup Kalshi is attempting to expand the amount of gambling on the country’s elections with the introduction of an “event contract” centered around congressional elections. Simply put, the firm aims to allow traders to bet on the event: Which party will win control of Congress?

July 17, 2023

KJ Boyle

Blog Post Anti-MonopolyCongressional OversightEthics in GovernmentFTCTech

Lina Khan Unscathed By Conflicted Ethics Officer and Pro-Monopoly Republicans

Rep Jim Jordan and company had already been eyeing Khan for an investigation because she had the audacity to enforce a consent decree that Twitter violated under Elon Musk’s leadership. Then, they eagerly seized on last month’s (conveniently timed) reporting from Bloomberg which published a previously unseen memo from an FTC ethics official and accused Chair Khan of ignoring the official’s recommendation. With that backdrop, the Republicans seemed poised to strike while the iron was hot, a culmination of their years-long project to undermine Khan’s leadership and reputation. The result was … much different. Thanks to some sleuthing on our part and the bipartisan support for taking on tech monopolies, yesterday’s hearing was less a damning inquisition and more a victory lap for Khan’s rejuvenation of the FTC.

July 14, 2023

Timi Iwayemi

Hack WatchNewsletter CryptocurrencyEthics in GovernmentFinancial Regulation

The Crypto Industry Thinks Gary Gensler Should Recuse Himself From Enforcement Actions.

If we were to agree to the industry’s demand that policy experts should be precluded from regulating issues they have spent significant amounts of time developing expertise in, we would be setting a precedent that severely undermines any kind of public-minded enforcement. In fact, banning experts such as Gensler would leave the public with a pool of potential regulators who are either already corporate-aligned or unqualified to adequately opine on pressing issues.

July 05, 2023 | The American Prospect

KJ Boyle

Op-Ed Anti-MonopolyEthics in GovernmentFTCIndependent Agencies

Lina Khan Haters Took A Premature Victory Lap

It turns out that the ethics official who recommended that Khan recuse herself from a case involving Meta is an owner of Meta stock. This ethics judgment was music to the ears of the media organizations, Republicans, and antitrust hacks who have been attacking Lina Khan throughout her leadership. Beyond being wrong and selective in singling out FTC officials for ethics concerns, the problem with Pankey’s opinion is deeply ironic. Pankey herself has a legitimate conflict of interest in relation to Meta.