Sen. John Kennedy’s (R-La.) Justice Against Corruption on K Street (JACK) Act Introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives
Oct 31 2018
WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Reps. Andy Biggs and Hakeem Jeffries introduced Sen. John Kennedy’s (R-La.) bill, S.2896 the Justice Against Corruption on K Street (JACK) Act, in the U.S. House of Representatives Tuesday. Sen. Kennedy originally introduced this bill with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.), and the legislation passed in the U.S. Senate in August. The JACK Act would amend the Lobbying Disclosure Act to require lobbyists to disclose convictions of bribery, extortion, embezzlement, illegal kickbacks, tax evasion or money laundering. U.S. Reps. Biggs, Jeffries and Sen. Kennedy released the following statements:
“This idea is simple: If you have been convicted of a felony like bribery, extortion, embezzlement or tax evasion, you should have to disclose that when registering to become a lobbyist,” said Sen. Kennedy. “Corrupt lobbyists need to be brought into the sunlight, even if they’re wearing $6,000 suits. Political leaders and businesses need to know the backgrounds of those who are trying to influence public policy. These corrupt lobbyists are the worst kind of swamp creatures and they need a one-way ticket out of Washington.”
“This common-sense piece of legislation is another step forward in draining the Washington, D.C. swamp,” said Rep. Biggs. “There is no reason these individuals should be able to hide convictions for serious crimes like bribery, extortion, and embezzlement when lobbying Congress. These remissions foster corruption and the remedy is full transparency. I am pleased to work with Congressman Hakeem Jeffries and Senator John Kennedy, who introduced the bill in the Senate, and I look forward to the JACK Act becoming law.”
“We must clean up Washington and make it work for the people,” said Rep. Jeffries. “The JACK Act will boost transparency and accountability by requiring lobbyists to disclose any criminal convictions for bribery, money laundering, embezzlements or other related crimes. Corruption in this town is an American problem and we must come together in a bipartisan way to fix it.”
The bill’s title refers to Jack Abramoff, who was convicted of tax fraud and bribery. Jack re-registered as a federal lobbyist in 2017 and did not have to include his criminal history on his registration. The JACK Act will provide the public with much needed transparency and accountability over Congress’ actions.