Challenge: One of the world’s largest banking firms came to the Podesta Group seeking help with their opposition to the White House-proposed “Volcker Rule” that would ban banks from investing in or sponsoring hedge funds and private equity funds as part of the politically charged Wall Street reform agenda – a move that would result in thousands of jobs lost within this particular firm alone.
Strategy: Devise a bipartisan Hill outreach strategy that included targeted, high-level client meetings with moderate members of the Senate Banking Committee, the senators who authored the proposed legislation and a new champion whose districts contained hundreds of employees of the bank. Identify and recruit a Republican member willing to reach across the aisle and partner with a Democrat to offer an amendment during markup of the bill.
Result: We won support from new congressional allies, including the chairman of the Banking Committee, resulting in a proposed joint Senate amendment favorable to the client’s position. As a result of this support, the client’s desired language on the “Volcker Rule” was passed into law.