Phillips Helps Introduce Bipartisan Ethics Reform Bill to Prohibit Lobbying by Elected Officials

April 29, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Reps. Dean Phillips (D-MN) and Van Taylor (R-TX) introduced H.R. 2902, the Elected Official Lobbying Prohibition Act. This bipartisan legislation would close a long-standing loophole that allows elected officials to lobby on behalf of private clients.

Under current law, state and local officials can leverage their political influence to advance the goals of private sector patrons and special interests. H.R. 2902 would end that corrupt practice once and for all. However, the bill does not prohibit state and local officials from advocating at the federal level on behalf of their constituents. The complete text of H.R. 2902 can be found here.

“This isn’t controversial – elected officials should serve the people, not their pocketbook,” said Rep. Phillips. “Current law allows our leaders to lobby Washington on behalf of special interests, never mind the needs of their constituents. That is a blatant betrayal of the public trust, and it must be prohibited immediately. This bipartisan legislation is a victory for the American people and a much-needed step toward restoring their faith in our government.”

“Whether it be federal, state, or local elected officials, every officeholder should recognize the enormity of the trust granted to us by the people to represent their families in government,” said Rep. Taylor. For our democracy to function, the American people must have full and complete confidence knowing their elected officials work for them no matter their party or position. The Elected Official Lobbying Prohibition Act is will help increase transparency, root out corruption, terminate conflicts of interest, and return more power to We The People.”

Since he was elected to Congress in 2018, Rep. Phillips has made campaign finance and ethics reform a priority. Last year, Phillips introduced the Lobbying Disclosure Reform Act, a bipartisan bill that would improve transparency, strengthen enforcement, and prevent former Members of Congress from using their connections to influence the legislative process from the shadows.