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Lobbyist Watch

By Dan Froomkin
11:47 AM ET, 01/30/2009

Carrie Budoff Brown writes for Politico: "The new chief of staff to health reform czar Tom Daschle was a lobbyist through late last year and will have to recuse himself from issues he worked to influence, an administration aide said Thursday.

"Daschle adviser Mark B. Childress is the second lobbyist to land in the top ranks of the Health and Human Services department and joins at least 12 others who have found jobs in the administration — despite the president’s repeated pledges during the campaign to stamp out their influence in Washington.

"As a partner at the law firm Foley Hoag, Childress represented the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and PanFlu LLC, which sought assistance on mobile health technology issues. He will need to avoid making decisions that affect his former clients or the broader areas they represented, but Childress will not require a waiver because he did not lobby the health and human services department, the aide said."

Al Kamen writes in The Washington Post: "Former Raytheon lobbyist William J. Lynn, nominated to be deputy secretary of defense in an exception to Obama's blanket rule against hiring Washington lobbyists, is shoveling hard to get out of a public relations hole. But so far he seems to have dug himself a bit deeper."

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