Harbinger Strategies, the just-opened firm of ex-aides to Eric Cantor, has added a fourth lobbyist: Manny Rossman, a former Senate leadership staffer who was previously with the Breaux Lott Leadership Group.
Rossman began his career on Capitol Hill as an aide to the late Rep. Phil Crane, R-Ill., who was a senior member of the Ways and Means panel. He later went to work for then-Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss., handling his Senate Finance portfolio, and later moving into leadership. “We officially opened our doors this week ,” said Steve Stombres, the former top leadership aide to then-House Majority Leader Cantor, R-Va. “It’s an exciting time for Harbinger and our four founding partners to be able to announce our mystery partner.”
The other two lobbyists for the K Street startup are Kyle Nevins, who once served as Cantor’s deputy chief of staff, and John O’Neill, a former high-level Senate Republican aide. Rossman called the four lobbyists “longstanding friends” who all got to know each other while working on Capitol Hill and on K Street.
“I knew that John and Kyle and Steve were talking about starting a group,” said Rossman, who teamed up with former Sens. John Breaux, D-La., and Lott back in 2009. “We sat down and discussed it together and came to the conclusion that the four of us would strengthen each other’s practices in a way that would be powerful for achieving the types of results we want for our clients.”
The Breaux Lott firm is part of the recently merged Squire Patton Boggs , and the combined firm has recently said goodbye to numerous lobbyists and lawyers.
Rossman called working for Breaux and Lott an “honor,” adding, “We’re going to continue to have a close working relationship. But the opportunity to start a firm with Steve, John and Kyle was an opportunity I couldn’t pass it. It’s something that only comes along once in a career.”
Rossman declined to say whether he would bring any of his clients from the Breaux Lott/Squire Patton Boggs operation. But Stombres said that Harbinger has already assembled a client roster that includes investment firm the Blackstone Group, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, the Recording Industry Association of America and General Dynamics, among others.
The firm is all-GOP. Stombres says they won’t rule out bringing on a Democrat — and additional Republicans — at some point. But, for now, Stombres said, “We want to keep it small.”
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