Looking up at the rotunda in the US Capitol building

Government Relations

Insight, Inspiration, Advocacy. When And Where You Need It.
Our team offers insight into the inner workings of Capitol Hill and the Executive Branch from former Members of Congress, Administration officials, and senior staff.

Our Team

The Government Relations practice at Arent Fox is one of the most experienced, effective, and respected lobbying teams in the nation. One of the principal reasons for our success is that our group is both bipartisan and bicameral. That comprehensive service makes Arent Fox a go-to firm for clients that are faced with their most important public policy issues.

The practice includes a former U.S. Senator, a former Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, a former member of the board of directors of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services, and a former ambassador, as well as lawyers and government relations professionals who have worked for members of the House and Senate, key Congressional committees, and numerous government agencies. 

Our professionals use their firsthand knowledge of the inner workings of Capitol Hill and the Executive Branch to meet our clients objectives. The depth and breadth of our experience allows us to handle virtually any public policy issue for businesses of every size, nonprofit organizations, universities, government organizations, and trade and professional associations.

Our Focus

We assist our clients by designing and implementing government relations strategies customized to each clients individual needs and goals. Some clients need a sustained effort to help obtain favorable legislation or regulations by working with their elected representations and agency officials. Others require us to organize and manage a coalition that utilizes grassroots, media, and social networking to focus policymakers and the publics attention on a policy issue. Many clients utilize our services in conjunction with Arent Fox lawyers in our Regulatory, Business, or Litigation departments for a multidimensional approach to solving an issue critical to their business.

We are a destination shop for clients focusing on:

  • Health Care
  • Tax
  • Trade
  • Energy
  • Environment
  • Public Buildings
  • Higher Education
  • Transportation
  • Defense
  • Emerging Companies, Fintech, Sharing Economy

Our Top Issues

Our team has recently provided advocacy on a range of matters that span a range of critical sectors and issues. That advocacy work includes:

Health Care

  • Medicare/Medicaid reimbursement, HHS program funding, health workforce funding, and public health.
  • Represented the American Psychological Association in multiple congressional meetings – as well as facilitating meetings with senior Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services officials – to develop and implement a successful initiative to increase Medicare reimbursement for psychologists and neuropsychologists.
  • Secured the passage of an increase in funding for the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act, and annual appropriations of over $2 billion  for HIV/AIDS treatment and support services, on behalf of Communities Advocating Emergency AIDS Relief (CAEAR) Coalition, the largest HIV/AIDS coalition of metropolitan areas and community health clinics in the nation. This involved coordinating with a public relations firm, the client’s board of directors, and countless individual CAEAR members.
  • Assisted a medical device manufacturer over the course of several years of advocacy before Congress and the Executive Branch on Medicare reimbursement (Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System annual rulemaking), including facilitating numerous meetings with key members of Congress, committee leadership, trade associations, and other stakeholders. Arent Fox successfully helped restore a significant amount of proposed reimbursement cuts and collaborated with companies and associations in an informal joint effort.

Tax

  • For a leading global pharmaceutical company, we have provided comprehensive government relations support for several years, including advocacy for a major tax policy change within the Affordable Care Act that entailed ongoing negotiations with large competitor companies. We also provided strategic advice on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting, corporate inversion strategies, orphan drug policy, and current tax developments as needed.
  • Assisting the Work College Consortium (WCC), a consortium of nine federally-recognized Work Colleges which have an integrated work-learning-service curriculum, including successfully obtaining favorable tax treatment for student wages which offset the cost of tuition under a mandatory work requirement, inserting clarifying language exempting from the endowment tax Work Colleges which do not charge tuition.
  • Assisted a corporate client in developing and implementing a Congressional and Executive Branch strategy for obtaining beneficial modifications to federal clean energy tax incentives and reducing obstacles for increased utilization of such incentives, including successfully advocating for a provision in tax bills reported favorably out of the Senate Finance Committee.

Trade

  • Represent a major European specialty steel manufacturer on matters related to Section 232 tariffs imposed by Trump Administration on foreign steel products, including advocacy before the Department of Commerce, USTR, the White House, and Congress.
  • Represent trade associations and companies in advocacy related to free trade agreements, Section 301 and Section 232 tariffs, and other trade policy matters.
  • Assisting a US manufacturer in obtaining a $5 million working capital line of credit to support its exports.

Energy

  • Successfully advocated on behalf of a major national biofuels association, and separately on behalf of one of its largest members, for an extension of the existing biodiesel tax credit for two years; at the same time laying the groundwork for transitioning the tax incentive to a biodiesel producers credit.
  • During the 115th Congress (2017-2018), worked to ensure the protection of clean energy incentives and the inclusion of interest deduction, pass-through entity and other provisions important to energy clients in the landmark Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

Environment

  • Assisted the National Wilderness Society, working on legislation and regulatory matters involving public lands management and national wildlife preserves.
  • On behalf of an association client, we were instrumental in helping pass the District of Columbia’s clean energy act, which will allow DC to be the first major jurisdiction in the country to reach the target of sourcing all of its electricity needs from renewables. We also helped a client advocate successfully for enactment of the last two iterations of the District’s solar energy standards.

Public Buildings

  • Assisted in obtaining authorization of and funding for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Headquarters in Washington, DC.
  • Advised on the process to select a location for the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, DC.
  • Worked on the location of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Montgomery County, MD.
  • Assisted clients on a project involving the location of the U.S. Department of State at 19th Street, NW in Washington, DC.
  • Advocated for clients on the authorization of the new Department of Defense Joint Medical Command Headquarters in Northern Virginia.
  • Assisted a client in negotiating an extension of the Coast Guard Headquarters lease in Washington DC.

Economic Development

  • Passage of H.R. 3699, the historic “Federal and District of Columbia Government Real Property Act,” which transferred large parcels of land, including Poplar Point on the Anacostia River and Reservation 13 adjacent to RFK Stadium, from the federal government to the District government for development.
  • Assisted the Opportunity Finance Network (OFN), a coalition of more than 200 Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), with ongoing legislative monitoring, advocacy, and implementation of the annual association fly-in. Assisted in securing increased federal appropriations for small business economic development in the Treasury Department CDFI program and advocated on renewal of New Markets Tax Credit.

Higher Education

  • Assisted the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) in its successful effort to obtain a $102 million grant of federal stimulus funding, the largest federal grant in the state of Arkansas’ history and the second largest stimulus grant from broadband stimulus funds in the nation, under the U.S. Commerce Department’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program. Arent Fox attorneys helped UAMS at every stage of the application process with respect to regulatory compliance and public policy issues, including helping form the statewide coalition that supported the application, to address critical broadband needs in health care, higher education, public safety, and research in unserved, underserved, and economically distressed areas in Arkansas
  • Assisting the Work College Consortium in obtaining multiple significant increases in their appropriations funding and maintaining the integrity of the Work College model in the Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization process.

Transportation

  • Assisted in securing significant funding line items for Florida light rail project in a recent Department of Transportation Budget and appropriations bill, including advocacy before senior Executive Branch officials and Congress.
  • Serving as primary Washington counsel in support of a regional passenger rail project in Pennsylvania, including helping obtain nearly $20 million in appropriations over several years for engineering and design work, advising on issues before the Federal Transit Administration, and working on legislation authorizing the final construction phase.
  • Advised major U.S. airline on policy issues related to Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization legislation.

Defense

  • Assisted in drafting bipartisan legislation regarding expedited referrals to fetal medicine specialists for pregnant military personnel who may need fetal surgery to correct birth defects. The President signed this provision into law in the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act.
  • Secured health care-oriented report language in the committee reports accompanying the FY14, FY15, and FY17 National Defense Authorization Acts in the House and Senate.

Political Law

  • In addition to our federal, state, and local advocacy, our Political Law group advises a wide range of political, corporate and nonprofit clients on every aspect of state and federal election law, campaign finance regulation, lobbying compliance, communications law, tax, and government ethics.

Key Contacts