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Politics, Law and Policy Blog

Bipartisan policy insights and political intelligence

Tharon Johnson and Eric Tanenblatt Mentioned in AJC’s Daily Jolt

Posted in Georgia

MLA’s Tharon Johnson and Eric Tanenblatt were mentioned in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Daily Jolt, “Kasim Reed: ‘You’re trying to have an Obama coalition when you won’t say the name of the president?’” on December 8, 2014.

Kasim Reed: ‘You’re trying to have an Obama coalition when you won’t say the name of the president?’

The Atlanta mayor may soon have an ally making his case in a bid to lead the Democratic Party of Georgia. Democratic consultant Tharon Johnson, a former Obama strategist and a protégé of Reed, took another step toward challenging current chairman DuBose Porter of Dublin on Friday.

On GPB’s “Political Rewind” show, Johnson said he was interested in mounting a challenge for the job:

“I’m seriously considering it, and the reason is…because of the outpouring of support, through emails and calls – and even Republicans via Twitter, calling me ‘Mr. Chairman.’”

That latter barb was aimed at Eric Tanenblatt, Johnson’s colleague at McKenna, Long & Aldridge and a Republican consultant, who has been egging him on. One more word from Johnson:

“But it’s bigger than who’s going to lead the party. It’s more about who really has the ideas, the energy and the track record of, basically, winning in this state.”

 

Georgia Government Affairs Team Ranked as a Top Governmental Affairs Firm

Posted in Georgia

MLA’s Georgia State Government Affairs team was featured as a Top Government Affairs Firm in the 2014 James Magazine rankings.

Additional individual honors included:

Chuck McMullen: Top Lobbyist for Associations

Sharon Gay: Top Female Lobbyist

Blake Ashbee: Rising Star

Tharon Johnson: Rising Star

Click here for the full rankings.

Lisa Ellman Op-Ed Featured in San Francisco Chronicle

Posted in Federal, Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS)

MLA’s Lisa Ellman authors article, “Drones have benefits, but community must weigh in before they fly,” featured in the San Francisco Chronicle.

Drones have benefits, but community must weigh in before they fly

Alameda County Sheriff Greg Ahern sought to protect the public by enhancing his forces’ ability to fight crime and protect officer safety in risky situations — all in a cost-effective manner that would maximize the efficiency of tax dollars. It seems like Ahern was fulfilling his obligations as sheriff.

But because his decision involved unmanned aircraft systems, more commonly known as drones — and because the public feels they were not adequately informed about his agency’s plans — we have heard strenuous opposition from the community.

Confusion abounds about the use of drones in our country. A “drone” can refer to anything from toys for kids, to tools of industry or law enforcement, to tools of war. Military use has caused us to associate drones, whatever their function, with combat operations and intelligence gathering. But a drone is just a platform for a camera, or other technology. They enhance safety and efficiency for government agencies and law enforcement, as well as industry and consumers. Some of the privacy and other policy issues they present are unique, while others are not. As a society, we must consider thoughtfully how drones can be beneficial, and where unmanned aircraft system-specific protections for the public are necessary.

Click here to read the full article.

Health Insurance Exchanges: State of the States

Posted in Health Policy

By Cindy Gillespie

Health Insurance Exchanges: State of the States update is our weekly report on Health Insurance Exchange developments.

This week, CMS released long-awaited guidance for insurers, advising them on how to handle various enrollment and reenrollment scenarios for the 2015 Open Enrollment season and staff for the DC Health Benefit Exchange Authority presented a proposed FY 2016 budget of $32.5 million.

Health Care Weekly Wrap-Up

Posted in Health Policy

By Cindy Gillespie

Health Care Weekly Wrap-Up  is our weekly look at developments affecting health care at the federal and state levels.

This week, the Department of Health and Human Services released two reports with state-specific data on the quality of care given to Medicaid or CHIP beneficiaries and Representative Kathy Castor introduced a bill to extend the ACA’s enhanced Medicaid payment rate for two more years

Dan Caprio to Speak at Congressional Civil Justice Caucus Academy Briefing – Friday, November 21

Posted in Cybersecurity

MLA’s Dan Caprio will be a featured speaker at the Congressional Civil Justice Caucus Academy Briefing event this Friday, November 21. The event, “Cyberattacks, Data Breaches, and Serial Litigation – Should Federal Data Security Legislation be on Congress’ Horizon?” is hosted by the Law and Economics Center of George Mason’s School of Law and will take place Rayburn House Office Building.

Target, Home Depot, Neiman Marcus, and JP Morgan Chase are part of the expanding list of firms whose data systems have been breached in the last year, exposing customers to identity theft, financial fraud, and phishing scams. There has been growing concern that the state patchwork of data breach laws are leaving both businesses and consumers unsatisfied. Businesses are concerned that serial litigation will become the norm as state attorneys general consider investigation and potential litigation. What legal obligations should businesses have to prevent data breaches or to protect consumers after a breach occurs? What security standards and enforcement mechanisms are necessary to tackle this issue? Should Congress consider a federal standard, and how would such a standard affect state and private litigation?

Click here for complete event information and registration.

 

Health Insurance Exchanges: State of the States

Posted in Health Policy

By Cindy Gillespie

Health Insurance Exchanges: State of the States update is our weekly report on Health Insurance Exchange developments.

This week, CMS and State-based Marketplaces nationwide made final preparations for Open Enrollment which begins on November 15 and McKenna Long & Aldridge launched a new blog focused on developments in legislation, regulation, litigation and breaking news in federal and state-based health insurance exchanges.