McKenna Long & Aldridge’s GOP ties boosted its influence in Washington during the Bush era.
Its hiring this week of Howard Dean, the former governor of Vermont and chairman of the Democratic National Committee, should help the law firm’s government affairs practice during the Obama administration.
The practice’s focus is on “the intersection of business and government,” says senior managing director Eric Tanenblatt, “and having someone like Gov. Dean, who’s been in the political environment like he has, will be an invaluable resource to us.”
Dean will guide clients on health care and alternative energy matters.
McKenna Long is known for Republican insiders like Tanenblatt, Gov. Sonny Perdue’s former chief of staff. But it’s also home for Democrats like former U.S. Rep. Buddy Darden.
“Our firm,” states Tanenblatt, “is bipartisan.”
Press Release from the firm.
I've got to say, as a student of paralegal studies and someone toying with the idea of law school somewhere down a road of undetermined length, Howard Dean in a law firm tickles me. I now have more fodder for meeting or working with Dr. Dean in the future.
I'm also proud at how swiftly the man found a venue for his new direction and how he's still working in areas he made promises to in his presidential campaign.
But at the same time, this news is like a knife to the heart. I feel very disheartened that a man as clever, industrious, and effective as Howard Dean has no place in Washington or within the new administration. To me, Dean is one of the faces of the Janus-like future of the Democratic party. I am constantly inspired by his ability to get things done, his foresight in politics and policy, and by the fact that the man gives a damn and doesn't give up. Barack Obama may have inspired me to give voice to my political opinions in 2008, but it was Dean's work that allowed for their to be a local outlet when I needed one.
This is just a new step for the man, I know. We may see great things arise from his position at McKenna, Long & Aldridge. I certainly hope so. Yet, it seems so odd that Dean should have to go looking for a place to work from rather than be shoved into a demanding and rewarding position from within Team Obama because of his resume.
Still, I hope Howard Dean continues to make news with his progressive activities.