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Category Archives: Government Ethics

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Trade Associations: “Antitrust Powder Kegs”

Posted in Government Ethics

By Stefan Passantino Check out this important update from my colleagues, Gaspare Bono, Stephen Chippendale, and Claire Maddox on the vulnerability of trade associations to antitrust suits: Two recent settlements between the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and professional associations underscore the fact that antitrust risks arise even from good-intentioned codes of ethics. The two associations,… Continue Reading

Lessons from Robert F. McDonnell’s Grand Adventure

Posted in Government Ethics

By David Fine The unfolding tale of Virginia Governor Robert F. McDonnell is like a law school exam about almost everything that can be done wrong at the intersection of ethics, campaign finance and criminal law. It is a lesson for politicians, companies doing business with government, and their advisors. Notably, the FBI’s investigation of… Continue Reading

New Private Travel Regulations from the House Ethics Committee

Posted in Government Ethics

By David Fine The House Ethics Committee has adopted new regulations for the acceptance of reimbursement for travel expenses incurred by House members and staff  from a private source for purposes related to their official duties. The new rules are effective April 1, 2013. According to the Committee, the regulations “supersede any prior inconsistent Committee… Continue Reading

In Rare Use of Opinion Procedure Release, DOJ Opines on Who is a “Foreign Official” under the FCPA

Posted in Government Ethics

By David Fine The Justice Department recently issued an opinion procedure release on the question of who is a “foreign official” under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.   The DOJ determined that a member of a royal family of a foreign country was not a foreign official simply by dint of his membership in the royal family,… Continue Reading

The Stock Act: Congress Acts Against ‘Insider Political Trading’…on Capitol Hill

Posted in Government Ethics, Political Law

By Stefan Passantino Proponents of ethics reform and increased political transparency in Washington don’t often see reform proposals pass through Congress by overwhelming margins, and rarely does anyone bemoan an excess of “political intelligence” in Washington. But with Congressional passage of the so-called ‘STOCK Act’ last week, that is exactly what happened. The impetus to act… Continue Reading

Gifts to Government Officials: If in Doubt, Seek an Advisory Opinion

Posted in Government Ethics

By David Fine The Colorado Constitution contains a strict ban on gifts to government officials. A matter recently decided by the Colorado Independent Ethics Commission (IEC) illustrates why government officials in Colorado should seek an advisory opinion from the Commission before engaging in conduct that might violate the state’s constitutional provisions regulating interactions between government… Continue Reading

Campaign Finance: States Propose Rule Rewrites

Posted in 2012 Elections, Government Ethics, Political Law

By David Fine The Colorado Secretary of State has proposed a significant rewrite of Colorado’s campaign finance rules. The Secretary has received public comment and my guess is that final rules will be promulgated in the near future. The rules may generate litigation and will require careful study to ensure compliance going into the 2012 elections. Once… Continue Reading

The Inaugural Post: Welcome to the Politics, Law and Policy Blog

Posted in 2012 Elections, Cybersecurity, Energy Policy, Government Ethics, Health Policy, Infrastructure, Political Law, Tax Policy, Transportation

By Eric Tanenblatt Happy New Year and welcome to the new Politics, Law and Policy Blog: Bipartisan policy insights and political intelligence. This blog is a forum led by members of the Public Policy and Regulatory Affairs practice at McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP, an international law and public policy firm with offices in nine… Continue Reading