“They see this as a straight-up fairness issue,” said Republican Bruce Mehlman, a partner with Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen & Thomas, whose lobbying clients include the Technology CEO Council and Adobe Systems. “You will find every tech company and a large number of other sectors affirmatively lobbying Congress to legalize the immigration status of the Dreamers.”
“White Houses are always somewhat opaque places of fascination, where you don’t quite know who is up and who is down, or how decisions are ultimately reached,” said Bruce P. Mehlman, a prominent Republican lobbyist who served in the George W. Bush administration. “The added complexity here was there was not a single consistent governing philosophy. It was not clear if the president saw trade the way that Gary Cohn sees it or the way Steve Bannon sees it.”
“Republicans have always been fine with most of tech, because Republicans have usually defaulted pro-business,” said Bruce Mehlman, a Republican lobbyist and former Commerce Department official said in an interview. “This is less about any one issue and more about the new populist wing of the Republican party — populism is suspicious of bigness, and the biggest companies now are tech.”
With GOP efforts to gut the Affordable Care Act on the verge of derailing, healthcare industry groups seeking repeal of ACA taxes on their members are looking to hitch a ride on a new legislative train.
Perhaps the health care industry has lost its lobbying mojo. Despite a mystique that K Street controls the unseen levers of power in Washington, a contingent of well-known and flush-with-cash groups representing doctors, hospitals, patients and seniors appears so far unable to kill — or significantly alter — a bill its members despise.
THE BIG IDEA: With the Russia scandal and self-inflicted wounds paralyzing his White House, it’s easy to lose sight of the tectonic forces that powered President Trump’s victory last year. But they continue to exist, and they’re a major reason why he remains remarkably popular among Republicans. Republican lobbyist Bruce Mehlman, who has long represented technology companies, sees parallels between the cycle of disruption that’s churned through Silicon Valley and what’s now wreaking havoc on Washington.
Why won’t House Ways and Means Committee Chair Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) give up on the controversial border adjusted tax? The two may be hoping that by continuing to push the tax, they will stake out a stronger negotiating position as Republican lawmakers and the White House work on a tax reform bill, former congressional staffers told Bloomberg BNA.
The House’s passage of legislation to repeal and replace ObamaCare has thrown a new curve into Republicans’ efforts to overhaul the tax code. The vote, which came just a week after the White House rolled out its tax reform plan, took much of official Washington by surprise. A previous attempt to muscle through the legislation had failed in March.