In addition to a bigger office and an increase in responsibilities, the newly appointed House Majority Whip, Steven Scalise, is also getting a larger staff. Over the past few weeks he’s been hard at work interviewing candidates to fill vacancies on his team, and as Politico reports, he has been seeking advice from an unlikely place:
Quinn Gillespie & Associates’ John Feehery (registered to lobby on behalf of major corporations like AT&T, Sony Corp., Qualcomm, and 21st Century Fox) sat in on and participated in multiple official interviews with job candidates last month for the new Majority Whip’s press operation.
That’s right, the third most powerful Republican in the House had a registered federal lobbyist sit in on interviews for his new communications director — a move Politico categorized as “highly unusual.” This is just an extreme example of the close ties between K Street and the halls of Washington. To appreciate the bigger problem, consider that 416 former members of Congress are now working as lobbyists, and 122 former lobbyists are working as Congressional staffers.