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Wednesday, March 13, 2019 3:00 pm

Donnelly joining DC lobbying firm

BRIAN FRANCISCO | The Journal Gazette

Former U.S. senator Joe Donnelly of Indiana has joined the largest lobbying firm in Washington, D.C.

Akin Gump announced Wednesday that Donnelly will become a partner April 1 in its public law and policy practice. He will advise clients in the financial services, defense and health care industries, Akin Gump said in a news release.

Donnelly is prohibited by law from doing lobbying work – trying to influence federal legislators – for two years after his departure from the Senate early this year. 

The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics lists Akin Gump as the largest lobbying firm by revenue for each of the past five years, including $37.7 million in 2018.

Donnelly, a resident of Granger in St. Joseph County, was a Democratic member of the House from 2007 through 2012, when he was elected to a six-year term in the Senate. He lost his seat in the November election to Republican Mike Braun of Jasper. Braun this year introduced legislation that would prohibit former members of Congress from federal lobbying.

Akin Gump public law and policy practice co-chair Brian Pomper said in the news release that Donnelly "is tremendously well liked and well regarded by his former colleagues in the Senate and the House, and his firsthand experience with key policy issues in the financial services, health care and defense sectors will be invaluable to our clients who are navigating this era of a divided government." 

While in the Senate, Donnelly was a member of the Armed Services and Banking committees.

Donnelly said in the release, “Akin Gump maintains a reputation of hosting a preeminent public policy practice and is home to a fantastic and deep bipartisan team, and joining the firm was an easy decision for me."

Donnelly has been an adjunct professor at the University of Notre Dame, his alma mater, since leaving the Senate. He is the third former of member of Congress hired recently by Akin Gump, the firm said.

bfrancisco@jg.net