Former Rep. Charlie Melancon (D-La.), one of the past leaders of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition, has taken a job as senior vice president of government relations and public policy for the International Franchise Association.
“Charlie’s strong pro-business background and his bi-partisan relationships on Capitol Hill will help the IFA, and the franchising industry, strengthen and advance our job creation agenda in Washington,” IFA President and CEO Stephen Caldeira announced in a statement Wednesday.
Melancon will direct IFA’s lobbying and political activities, including managing staff members covering state and federal issues, according to the statement.
“As a former franchise owner, I fully understand the challenges facing small business owners,” Melancon said in the statement. He owned Baskin-Robbins franchises in Louisiana from 1978 until 1991.
Melancon was first elected to represent Louisiana’s 3rd Congressional district in 2004. He was one of three co-chairmen of the Blue Dogs.
He did not seek re-election to the House last year in order to challenge incumbent Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), but he lost by nearly 19 percentage points.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., carries a musket on stage as he speaks during the American Conservative Union's Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at National Harbor, Md., on Thursday March 6, 2014.