News & Politics

With Biden in Power, Which Lobbyists Are Winners and Losers?

The 2020 elections reordered the power structure on K Street.

Photograph by wellesenterprises/iStock.

Winners

Jeff Ric Chetti

Corporate clients such as Amazon have reportedly been flocking to this veteran lobbyist of late. One possible reason: His brother is top Biden adviser Steve Ricchetti.

Jeff Forbes

Though his lobbying shop, Forbes Tate Partners, is already a top-ten firm—$19 million of revenue in 2020—Forbes’s close ties to Senate Democrats should make his next four years even more lucrative.

Steve Elmendorf

Last year, this veteran power­broker helped drive nearly $15 million of revenue to his firm, Subject Matter. As Democrats look to move their agenda through Congress, his links to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be all the more in demand.

Losers

Brian Ballard

After serving as Donald Trump’s Florida lobbyist years ago, Ballard expanded into Washington in 2017 and quickly emerged as one of the era’s signature influencers. These days, his relationship to Trump no longer has much value in DC.

Matt Schlapp

A client, Abbott Labs, dumped the Trump ally as its lobbyist in June over his criticism of Black Lives Matter. He’s also moving this year’s CPAC gathering to Florida, diminishing his local presence.

Corey Lewandowski

Though he never registered as a lobbyist, former Trump campaign manager Lewandowski became a paid insider who helped T-Mobile secure approval for its $26.5-billion acquisition of Sprint. But such companies don’t need him anymore.

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Senior Writer

Luke Mullins is a senior writer at Washingtonian magazine focusing on the people and institutions that control the city’s levers of power. He has written about the Koch Brothers’ attempt to take over The Cato Institute, David Gregory’s ouster as moderator of NBC’s Meet the Press, the collapse of Washington’s Metro system, and the conflict that split apart the founders of Politico.