WASHINGTON – Former U.S. Rep. Ron Kind isn’t cutting ties with D.C. following his retirement from Congress at the end of last year.
The Wisconsin Democrat is joining the Washington-based law firm Arnold & Porter as a senior policy advisor with the firm’s legislative and public policy practice, the group told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Kind will counsel the firm’s clients dealing with the government on issues ranging from tax and trade regulations to health care and retirement security issues. Some of that work could involve helping clients navigate recent legislation passed through Congress.
“It’s a good fit because it checks all the right boxes for me,” Kind told the Journal Sentinel. “It’ll be fun to be able to continue working in those areas that I’ve devoted so much of my life to already.”
Kind, who represented Wisconsin’s 3rd Congressional District since his election in 1996, served on the House Ways and Means Committee, a powerful panel that is effectively Congress’ chief tax-writing body, carving out a role on Capitol Hill as a pro-trade Democrat. He focused throughout his career, in part, on health care-related issues and was largely recognized as one of the more bipartisan members of Congress during his 26 year tenure.
His move into the D.C. policy world is not unusual for lawmakers after they retire from Congress. Former Connecticut Democratic U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd serves as senior legal counsel for Arnold & Porter.
In an interview, Kind, who received a law degree from the University of Minnesota and was previously a district attorney in Wisconsin, said he is working to reactivate his law license in Wisconsin and Washington. He said he is admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court and indicated he could serve as legal counsel with Arnold & Porter in the future.
Kind, 59, did not rule out the prospect he could work as a lobbyist for the firm. There is, however, a one-year “cooling-off period” in which former lawmakers are barred from lobbying current government officials.
“It really does depend on client needs in the future, what help they might require,” Kind said of potentially working as a lobbyist. “That’s yet to be determined in the future.”
The new job means Kind will continue to split his time between Washington and Wisconsin. He and his wife, Tawni, still have their farm in western Wisconsin.
“It’s an exciting opportunity,” Kind said of his new position. “I just think this is a great fit for me being able to join one of the preeminent international law firms in the world, located here in D.C.”
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This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Former U.S. Rep.Ron Kind joins D.C. law firm as senior policy adviser
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