Washington lobbyists speak out on the results the day after the 2012 Presidential Election.
Chris Frates, Lobbying Correspondent, National Journal
Jack Howard, Vice Chairman & Chief Operating Officer, Wexler & Walker Public Policy
Joel Johnson, Managing Director, The Glover Park Group
Bill Pierce, Senior Director, APCO Worldwide
Heather Podesta, Founder and President, Heather Podesta + Partners
As National Journal’s lobbying correspondent, Chris Frates covers the intersection of money, politics,
and policy inhabited by Washington’s influence class. Prior to joining National Journal, he worked for Politico where he founded and authored “Politico Influence,” a daily intelligence and analysis email chronicling Washington’s lobbyists and message makers. He also covered healthcare reform for Politico, regularly breaking news and driving the conversation on that all-consuming debate. Mr. Frates also founded and wrote Politico Pulse, the organization’s daily health reform briefing that
quickly became a must-read crib sheet in Washington.
Before coming to Washington, Mr. Frates covered the Colorado legislature and politics for The Denver Post and was part of a team whose work was recognized as a finalist for the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news. He has covered three statehouses and numerous local, state, and national campaigns, and his political analysis has been featured on the CBS Evening News, CNN, FOX News, MSNBC, WTOP, and many other national and local television and radio programs. Of all the important people he has interviewed, Mr. Frates still counts Mister Rogers among his favorites.
With nearly 25 years of service in government, Mr. Howard is the only person in Washington to have served as a senior strategic advisor to two Speakers of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate, and as a key member of the White House staff to both President Bushes. This gives him the unique ability to advise clients from the first hand perspective of not just the House, Senate or White House alone, but all three combined.
Prior to joining Wexler & Walker, Mr. Howard served as in the White House as Deputy Assistant to President George W. Bush. He worked in the Office of Legislative Affairs where he coordinated the efforts of senior White House officials, the Cabinet Departments and agencies to secure congressional passage of President Bush’s top legislative priorities. Earlier he served in the White House under President George H.W. Bush from 1989 to 1992, also in the Legislative Affairs office, where he had similar responsibilities.
Mr. Howard also has extensive experience having worked at the highest levels of the U.S. Congress, having served as senior counsel and advisor to Republican leaders of the House and Senate, including Speakers Dennis Hastert and Newt Gingrich as well as Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott. Mr. Howard’s experience has earned him recognition as an inside leader in Washington. National Journal names him one of the “Top 50 Bush White House staff members,” while Capitol Hill’s leading newspaper, Roll Call, regularly acknowledged Howard among the “Top 50 Congressional staff members.”
Joel Johnson is a managing director with The Glover Park Group. With over two decades of legislative and communications experience, he leads a team of professionals who specialize in crafting and implementing legislative strategy.
Prior to joining The Glover Park Group in 2005, Mr. Johnson founded The Harbour Group and built an impressive portfolio of private and public clients worldwide. Before that, he served President Clinton as senior advisor for policy and communications. In that capacity, Mr. Johnson was charged with coordinating the messaging strategy designed to promote the administration’s legislative and policy goals.
Mr. Johnson also has experience in strategic communications on Capitol Hill. In 1995, he was appointed staff director for the Senate Democratic Leadership, serving as Tom Daschle’s chief legislative and communications advisor for five years. He also served the House Democratic Leadership as executive director of the Democratic Study Group, held senior staff positions on the Senate Judiciary and Labor and Human Resources Committees, and was chief of staff to Senator Howard
William Pierce joined APCO Worldwide in 2005. Mr. Pierce specializes in providing strategic advice and counsel, tactical execution and representation to health care clients. He helps clients develop strategies and tactics that combine media relations, policy, advocacy and alliances in campaigns to achieve definable objectives. He also provides crisis communication training and counsel.
Heather Podesta is a leading legislative and public policy strategist with experience on Capitol Hill and in the private sector. Her firm was recently named one of DC’s top 50 government relations firms by The National Law Journal. Ms. Podesta has guided clients from Fortune 500 companies to nonprofits to success in Congress and the Executive Branch.
Bill Pierce, a senior vice president of APCO Worldwide, lays out the plan the Obama Administration should follow during the lame duck session in Congress. Despite the resounding affirmation of his agenda, Pierce declares that Obama should work to build a bridge to the opposing Republicans.