Following Hastert Through the Revolving Door


Former House Speaker Dennis Hastert’s days raising money for his political campaigns might come in handy when he sits down with the clients of his new employer, law and lobbying firm Dickstein Shapiro LLP.

The firm has a long list of clients in the health care sector — an industry that provided generous support for Hastert’s during his time in Congress.

According to lobbying reports filed by the Senate Office of Public Records and the firm’s website, Dickstein Shapiro’s current and past clients include about a dozen pharmaceutical or health care companies. The health care sector has been the number two contributor to Hastert over the years. Individuals and political action committees associated with the industry have contributed close to $4 million to his campaigns since 1989 when he was first elected to Congress, according to campaign finance records from the Center for Responsive Politics. Many of the firm’s clients lobbied on health care issues that include Medicare, Medicaid, and health care research. Budgetary and appropriations issues were also cited.

Hastert, who resigned last November, was the longest serving Republican Speaker, a post he held from the end of the short tenure of Rep. Robert Livingston, R-La., in Dec. 1998 until January 2007, when Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., replaced him.

The lobbying firm made an announcement on Saturday, May 31, that he was signing on for a second Washington career. According to a Roll Call article, Hastert is joining the firm with one of his senior congressional staffers.

Dickstein Shapiro’s practice boasts a number of energy firms, including include Duke Energy, Peabody Energy and the Electric Power Supply Association among other electric utility companies. During his congressional career, Hastert took in close to $2 million in contributions from employees, their family members, and PACs in the energy and natural resources sector.

AT&T was Hastert’s top contributor over his career, giving close to $122,000 to his various campaigns. The telecommunications giant is also one of Dickstein’s clients, according to the company’s Web site, though the the firm apparently doesn’t lobby for AT&T, a search of records from the Senate Office of Public Records shows.