Democratic congressional staffers are leaving their positions on Capitol Hill to work for major tech companies, according to a Politico report.
April Jones, who worked as deputy legislative director and counsel for Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota on technology and telecommunications matters, left her position last Tuesday to join Apple’s government affairs team, Politico reported. Jones’ departure came on the same day that Klobuchar decried the influence of Big Tech in Washington during Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen’s testimony.
“Facebook and the other tech companies are throwing a bunch of money around this town and people are listening to them,” Klobuchar said during her questioning of Haugen, expressing frustration about the fact that “there are lobbyists around every single corner of this building that have been hired by the tech industry.” (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Internet Watchdog Says Ex-Intelligence Community Officials Are Echoing Big Tech Talking Points)
Lara Muldoon, who worked for Senate Commerce Committee Chair Democratic Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington, left in June to serve as a senior director of government affairs at the Information Technology Industry Council, a trade association.
The Senate Commerce Committee’s senior Democratic technology staffer, John Branscome, left the committee in September to work for Facebook’s federal policy team, Politico reported, while Branscome’s deputy, Shawn Bone, left for Verizon.
Over a dozen Democratic staffers have left their positions to work in the tech industry this year, Politico reported.
Democratic Rep. Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, who serves as chair of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, told Politico the departures related to the low salaries offered in staffer positions.
“It’s hard to keep very talented people here when the private sector is offering so much more money,” Doyle said. “You get people that want to come back, they go out for a while and make some money and then they want to come back.”
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