Congressional staffers who pass through the revolving door to join lobbying firms are often hot commodities for special interests seeking access to their former bosses. But just as having friends in high places can draw in clients, lobbyists may lose business if their connections in government fall from power. Just ask Matt McGinley, a former top staffer for then-Rep. Tom Price (R-GA), who is now the principal and sole lobbyist for his firm, Advanced Policy Consulting. Two clients who sought McGinley’s services around the time Price was confirmed as Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) terminated their relationships with McGinley shortly after Price resigned from HHS, new lobbying records show.
McGinley served as then-Rep. Price’s chief of staff from 2005 to 2011. This past July, CREW documented that McGinley, along with at least one other former Price congressional staffer, scored new lobbying clients around the time Price was confirmed to lead HHS.
McGinley registered to lobby for both the Alzheimer’s Association and Merck and Co. within two days of Price’s February 10, 2017 confirmation. Since then, McGinley has lobbied HHS on behalf of the Alzheimer’s Association during each of the four quarters for which he filed a report, and lobbied HHS on behalf of Merck and Co. during three of four quarters for which he filed a report.
Under fire for his use of private planes, Secretary Price resigned from HHS on September 29, 2017. Shortly after that, McGinley’s relationships with these two clients were terminated. According to lobbying disclosures filed earlier this month, McGinley stopped lobbying for the Alzheimer’s Association effective November 10th and stopped lobbying for Merck and Co. effective November 30th.
McGinley isn’t exactly walking away empty-handed, however. The Alzheimer’s Association and Merck and Co. paid his firm a combined $180,000 for a little more than nine months of work.