Golden, Gallagher Lead Bill to Prevent American Government Officials from Lobbying for Foreign Governments

May 24, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON — Congressman Jared Golden (ME-02) and Congressman Mike Gallagher (WI-08) recently introduced the Congressional and Executive Foreign Lobbying Ban. The bipartisan bill would ban members of Congress, senior executive branch officials, and general and flag officers of the Armed Forces from lobbying on behalf of foreign interests.

“Folks in Washington sweep it under the rug, but members of Congress, White House officials, and retired military brass have the ability to go to work for foreign governments to influence US policy after leaving office. Believe it or not, that’s entirely legal,” said Golden. “Congressman Mike Gallagher and I are introducing a bipartisan bill to end this practice and permanently bar former members of Congress, cabinet officials, and high-ranking military officers from lobbying on behalf of foreign countries. It’s dangerous and wrong that it’s allowed in the first place.”

“There is a growing problem in Washington: too many U.S. government officials are willing to shop their connections and expertise to foreign adversaries,” said Gallagher. “If you have the privilege of serving in the highest levels of the federal government, you should not be able to sell out the country and undermine our national security. This bipartisan bill holds government officials to a higher standard and ensures those trusted with faithfully executing the Constitution don’t stop once they’ve left government.”

Text of the legislation can be found here.

Golden has made rooting out corruption in Washington a top priority, introducing his comprehensive Plan to Fix a Broken Washington last summer, and leading efforts to improve transparency on political ads, force social media companies to verify that these ads are being bought by Americans, and completely prohibit former Members of Congress from lobbying after they leave office.

He has called out dark money efforts to mislead Mainers on important prescription drug legislation, and voted to protect the integrity of American elections by supporting the For the People Actwhich requires back-up paper ballots and empowers more Mainers to vote.

You can learn more about Golden’s work to clean up Washington here.