Monday, April 18, 2011

Steve Buyer Becomes Lobbyist

I can't say that I'm surprised by this news. U.S. Rep. Steve Buyer offered the excuse of his wife's health problems as a reason for not seeking re-election last year, but word nows comes that he has remained in Washington where he is working as a lobbyist after retiring from representing Indiana's 4th District in Congress. The Hill reports:

Former Rep. Steve Buyer (R-Ind.), for example, has registered to lobby despite being in the middle of the one-year cooling-off period for former House members.

Since January, Buyer has been lobbying for McKesson Corp., a San Francisco-based health information technology company, according to lobbying disclosure records. Buyer’s former chief of staff, Mike Copher, is also at the firm and is registered to lobby for T-Mobile.

Buyer said in a statement to The Hill that he would only lobby federal agencies for McKesson.

“The Steve Buyer Group LLC understands its obligations and restrictions pursuant to the law and also supports full disclosure,” Buyer said.
More than two dozen former members of Congress from the last session have joined firms that lobby Congress according to The Hill but only Buyer and two others actually registered to lobby during the one-year cooling off period. Buyer came under an ethics cloud during his last term of office for his role in forming a nonprofit organization, Frontier Foundation, that raised money largely from pharmaceutical companies that Buyer aided legislatively. Buyer said a House Ethics Committee investigation cleared him of wrongdoing last spring.

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