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Alignment Government Strategies, New Lobby Boutique, Comes Into Alignment | Downtown Moves

Five lobbyists at Williams & Jensen are leaving to set up their own bipartisan shop, Alignment Government Strategies.

Can You Lie in Politics? Supreme Court Will Decide

The Supreme Court has made pretty clear that putting your money where your mouth is deserves broad protection as a form of free political speech. The justices are about to consider whether outright lying in a campaign deserves a similar First Amendment shield.

History Lesson for McAllister: Members Caught Pursuing Staffers Never Survive

Rep. Vance McAllister is showing every sign he’s hunkering down in hopes of saving his nascent political life. But recent House history signals that it’s going to be a futile pursuit.

Unemployment Extension Deal May Hinge on Job Training Compromise

A potential agreement on a long-stalled House GOP proposal to streamline federal job training programs is emerging as a possible linchpin for a deal on a five-month extension of expired unemployment benefits.

GOP Wants More, or Less, From Obama on Trade

Congressional Republicans who support the administration’s free-trade agenda are pleading for President Barack Obama to make the issue a top priority.

On Trade, Obama Faces a Tough Political Dance

In pursuing its lofty international trade agenda, the Obama administration has been courting labor unions, long the strongest supporters of the president but also perhaps the strongest skeptics of expanded free trade.

Robert Zirkelbach Leaving AHIP for PhRMA | Downtown Moves

It’s as a colleague said, the end of an era. Robert Zirkelbach, the long-time chief flack at America’s Health Insurance Plans, is heading to another titan of the industry, the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers of America.

Abbott Ups Haas to Top Lobbyist | Downtown Moves

Abbott Laboratories has a new chief federal lobbyist.

GOP Considers Advancing Unemployment Extension With Jobs, Tax Provisions

House Rules Chairman Pete Sessions of Texas and other senior Republicans are pushing proposals to tie the extension of emergency unemployment insurance to jobs measures and the extension of some tax breaks in an attempt to bring the plan to the House floor.

Pay Equity Bill Exposes Gender Gap Politics for Senate GOP

Like so many legislative arguments, this week’s intensified debate about the gender gap in wages has been obscured by a fight over which side has the better statistics.

Defense Hawks May Look to Boost Competition in Air Force Satellite Launches

The Air Force’s space program is facing tough scrutiny on Capitol Hill as influential lawmakers in both parties publicly question the service’s commitment to competition in the increasingly lucrative area of satellite launches.

Russian Engine Used in Atlas V Rocket Under Scrutiny

The Pentagon has launched a review to determine whether using a Russian-built rocket engine to launch military satellites has any national security implications, following Russia’s seizure and annexation of Crimea.

Do Campaign Finance Violations Warrant Jail Time? | A Question of Ethics

Q. I was amazed to see last month that longtime Fiesta Bowl official John Junker was sentenced to time in federal prison. He’s been a respected member of the community for decades, and I have a hard time fathoming that he would do anything that warrants time in prison. He does not seem like a criminal to me, and from what I’m told, he was accused of breaking rules about how to raise money for political campaigns. Can you really go to jail for that?

A Case for Moran: 'Underpaid' Is Accurate

He’s sounding politically tone deaf, of course, but on the merits Rep. James P. Moran has a solid case to make about congressional compensation.

Bike Sharing Is a Winner in the Senate Tax Bill

Bike sharing systems would be among the winners under draft legislation extending a laundry list of tax incentives that Senate tax writers approved last week.

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