Bipartisanship: Who needs it?
That’s the ethos at a number of major K Street firms that have spurned the idea of playing to both sides of the aisle, despite the risk of losing influence and clients during changeovers in power.
Many of the most profitable shops in Washington proudly fly the colors of Republicans or Democrats and say their businesses are all the better for it.
“For every client that is seeking a bipartisan firm, there is another client that understands they need the type of help that an all-GOP firm can best provide,” said Phil Anderson, president of Navigators Global. “This is the team we play for, and it works for us.”
While GOP-leaning shops are more common in Washington, several lobby firms have built their business on blue-team credentials.
“What we are really we are good at, what we are known for, is explaining business to Democrats and explaining Democrats to business,” said Heather Podesta of Heather Podesta + Partners. “There is real space for a pro-business, Democratic consulting firm.”
There was a time when the partisan lobby firm appeared to be a dying breed. Many top-earning firms embraced a bipartisan model to ensure they would have sway no matter who controlled the White House or Congress.