After just one term in the House, Michael Patrick Flanagan returned to Chicago, where he continued working in the nonelective political sphere.
“I decided that there were a lot of other ways to help in public policy without actually holding an elected office,” said the Illinois Republican who toppled disgraced Rep. Dan Rostenkowski in 1994 before losing two years later to future disgraced Rep. and Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich.
“There are other ways to help public policy and shape the direction of the nation,” he said.
After a couple of years working in Chicago, the former member decided to move back to D.C. to continue his lobbying work, joining the firm Wexler & Walker Public Policy Associates. He then founded Flanagan Consulting and has since transitioned to providing business-consulting services. The firm does not interact directly with Congress and is not required to register as a lobbyist.
For two years, Flanagan worked with the State Department and was stationed near the Iranian border in Iraq, working with the Iraqi government on rule-of-law issues.
“I worked with judges, attorneys, with their corruption fighters,” he said. “I worked with the human rights people. I worked with the prisons.”
Flanagan stayed in the Middle East until late 2011. Now he is back in the United States, but he is still working with the Iraqi government and business leaders, as well as continuing to head Flanagan Consulting.
CQ Roll Call’s Life After Congress is designed to answer the question “Where are they now?” If that’s something you’ve asked yourself about a former member or members, drop us a line. We’ll do our best to track them down.