Thank you for your service Lynn Jenkins
If any other member of Congress had started up a lobbying firm before they left office, we would have had the same serious concerns as others have voiced across the country.
But it was our own Lynn Jenkins (R-KS), who represents the 2nd District, which includes Jackson County, who launched a new lobbying firm back in November, it was reported. She does not leave Congress until sometime this week.
In politics and government service, where perception is everything, the timing has not looked good.
Jenkins’ new business, LJ Strategies, LLC, was registered with the state of Kansas in November.
We’re giving the Congresswoman who grew up in Holton and Jackson County the benefit of the doubt. And we hope others do, too. Congresswoman Jenkins, I think, is just doing what a lot of former Congress people do.
Jenkins is wrapping up nearly 20 years of excellent public service, serving as Congresswoman of the 2nd District since 2009. Prior to that, she was Kansas State Treasurer 2003-2008 and before that she was a state legislator from 1999-2002.
The five-term congresswoman surprised political observers in Washington and Topeka last year when she announced her plan to retire from Congress at the end of this term and her decision to forgo a run for governor despite talk in GOP circles that she would have been the automatic frontrunner.
Federal law restricts Jenkins, the vice chair of the Republican conference, from lobbying (seeking to influence) members of Congress for one year after her term ends - but not her new lobbying firm’s associates.
And there are no laws reportedly against Jenkins herself lobbying Kansas state legislators.
With her nearly 20 years of experience in state and national politics, there’s no doubt that she will excel in the lobbying arena, just like she excelled in the political one.
We didn’t see eye to eye on all issues but I have always respected Lynn Jenkins for the good work that she has done for our state and nation. She has always been a good listener and she never forgot the folks back home here in Holton and Jackson County.
There should be a federal law against setting up a lobbying firm while you are still serving in Congress, however. In fact, former members of Congress should be barred from ever lobbying Congress.
It just does not look good and has placed heightened scrutiny on the congresswoman’s final votes. Jenkins voted for the recent Farm Bill, it was reported, but was listed as not present for the vote on funding the southern border wall.