Joe Donnelly accepts job at top lobbying firm after losing U.S. Senate seat

Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN), accompanied by his wife Jill, speaks on November 6, 2018 at the Hyatt Regency in Indianapolis, Indiana. Donnelly was defeated by his Republican challenger Mike Braun. (Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON – Former U.S. Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN) has accepted a job at a top lobbying firm in Washington D.C.

Akin Gump announced Wednesday that Donnelly will join the firm as a partner in its public law and policy practice.

The firm says Donnelly will advise clients in the financial services, defense and health care industries, among others, on a host of policy matters. He won’t be able to lobby the legislative branch for two years.

The Indiana Democrat lost his U.S. Senate in November to Republican Mike Braun. Before his six-year term in the Senate, he served three terms as a U.S. Representative.

Donnelly served on a number of committees during his Senate tenure, including the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee; the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry; and the Armed Services Committee, in addition to the Special Committee on Aging. His House tenure included service on the Financial Services and Veterans’ Affairs committees.

Sen. Donnelly’s arrival follows that of two other former members of Congress—former Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and Lamar Smith (R-TX)—who joined the firm earlier this year.

“We have long been known as a go-to firm in the public policy space thanks to our deep bench of bipartisan talent with significant Capitol Hill experience, and Sen. Donnelly continues that tradition,” said Akin Gump chairperson Kim Koopersmith. “What happens in Washington affects our clients’ businesses around the world, and the depth of our ability to help shape and influence policy is a key differentiator for us. Joe is the latest in a long line of distinguished former members of Congress who have chosen to continue their careers at Akin Gump, and I couldn’t be happier that he is joining us.”

Donnelly says joining the firm was an easy decision for him.

“I look forward to working with my many new colleagues and putting my legislative skills to work on behalf of many of Akin Gump’s clients.”

Donnelly’s first day at the firm will be April 1.

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