President Joe Biden campaigned in part on a promise that he would not abide corruption in his administration or hire lobbyists to serve in high-ranking government posts.
A recent report appears to depict a different reality, though. According to Breitbart, the report shows no fewer than 15 key members of the Biden administration — from Cabinet positions to senior executive branch positions — came from the same prominent corporate consultancy firm.
Critics have since spoken out against what at least described as “legalized corruption” in the bombshell report by The Intercept.
“Through the revolving door”
Secretary of State Antony Blinken, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, National Intelligence Director Avril Haines, CIA Deputy Director David Cohen, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, and National Cyber Director Chris Inglis, among others, all hail from WestExec.
The Intercept counted at least 15 individuals from the firm “across the White House, its foreign policy apparatus, and its law enforcement institutions,” with the potential for even more in the pipeline for other administration positions.
“Even by Washington standards, it’s a remarkable march through the revolving door, especially for a firm that only launched in 2017,” the outlet concluded.
A deeper potential problem lies in the fact that WestExec clients included multinational companies in the defense and tech sectors. Now, consultants who lobbied on behalf of those corporations are in positions from which they can set and shape policies that impact those former clients.
“Where do their loyalties lie?”
In its article, The Intercept determined that the “insularity” of the situation “poses concerns about the potential for groupthink, conflicts of interest, and what can only be called, however, oxymoronically, legalized corruption.”
Washington University law professor Kathleen Clark weighed in, acknowledging that the former lobbyists are “employed by the government” but expressing skepticism regarding whose interest they are truly representing.
“But are they actually working for the American people or not?” she asked. ” Where does their loyalty lies? The private sector can in essence co-opt the public sector.”
Breitbart editor-in-chief Alex Marlow previously tackled the trend of WestExec consultants moving into Biden’s circle in his book Breaking the News.
The White House issued a statement defending its hiring and placement process, declaring: “These White House officials are experienced government leaders whose prior private sector experience is part of a broad and diverse skill set they bring to government service.”