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Mr. BENNETT. It has been very definitely proven by numbers.
Mr. BENNETT. And also by quality of persons, very, very outstanding people.
Mr. GLICKMAN. OK.
Do you believe that the restrictions set up in your bill, and to some extent in the committee bill, and the criminal penalties that would enforce these restrictions, would cause people to refuse to accept relatively short Federal Presidential appointments? Let's say a 6 month or a 1 year?
Mr. BENNETT. No, I think anybody who takes a significant Federal appointment-and that would be a short one because it is certainly a long one-and you are looking at people that are, the way you phrased your question, people that take short periods are usually people that are doing it purely out of a sense of doing something great for their country. Those people above all else make the heavier sacrifices. The short-term people are the ones that make the heavier sacrifices generally.
Mr. GLICKMAN. What about the case of David Packard who runs a company with a lot of Defense contracts who would want to come in for 6 months or 1 year to help his Government and then go back to Hewlitt-Packard. Would he be covered under your bill?
Mr. BENNETT. I certainly hope so. If he had a substantial part to play in arranging for a contract with a particular contractor, he should be prohibited for 2 years for going back with that contractor. You mean Mr. Packard would be so callous? He wouldn't, I know him. He wouldn't be so callous as to handle a contract for his big production firm while he was Secretary-he would recuse himself to begin with. There is no way in which a man of his high caliber would be involved in handing out contracts to his own company.
Mr. GLICKMAN. I guess what I am saying is under the bills they talk about significant procurement responsibilities. The bills don't talk about with respect to responsibilities. The bills don't talk about with respect to going back to working for the contractor you had business with. That is existing law.
What we are talking about now is that you take somebody into the federal system who has “significant procurement responsibility.” The Deputy Secretary of Defense has to have significant procurement responsibility.
Mr. BENNETT. He still has to do something about that contract. It defines the people that you are talking about-that is a way of limiting the coverage of the bill. But he still has to do something about a contract with that contractor and he is prohibited from going back to work with that contractor from with whom he has had negotiations with regard to a contract.
Mr. GLICKMAN. Let's say for a moment that hypothetically Hewlett-Packard has 10 percent of the work on the Defense budget. David Packard is chairman of the board of Hewlitt-Packard, has a billion dollars' worth of stock, comes to work as Deputy Secretary of Defense and approves the star wars program. He doesn't go down the line and approve every single contract, but he in the aggregate approves the whole thing.
Mr. BENNETT. My bill was not really designed to get at a perfunctory thing. But if he is going to make a decision that his company should get business from the Department of Defense in star wars or anything else that is nothing righteous, the fact that he has that kind of arrangement.
Mr. GLICKMAN. All right.
Mr. BENNETT. That means he has to exclude himself from that sort of decision. It doesn't mean that he is automatically set out as a person that can't do something like that. But it means if he does do it then for his own company that he can't return to his own company for 2 years.
Mr. GLICKMAN. All right.
Let me just say this: I voted for your bill on the floor. So I don't mean to imply any hostility of questions here.
Mr. BENNETT. When you get to be an old man like me, hostility appears but it is not there. I don't have any hostility. I think you are a great American. Therefore, I assume that your vote and support of this idea is there, because I am very biased for this idea. If it is not it won't be because of any lack of Americanism on your part.
Mr. GLICKMAN. I appreciate that.
We have until March 15, as you know, the full Judiciary Committee, to either do nothing, or modify what we have done before. It would be useful for us to get some specifics of the anecdotal evidence so that we have-
Mr. BENNETT. Could you get your staff to get the specific questions and I will get them worked up for you?
Mr. GLICKMAN. Yes, we will talk to-
Mr. BENNETT. We have had that but our evidence is years old now, and we probably could get more up-to-date material.
Mr. GLICKMAN. OK.
Mr. GLICKMAN. Our next witness is from the Department of Justice, John C. Keeney, Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division.
Mr. Keeney, it is a pleasure to have you here. You may proceed. You may summarize your statement. The entire statement will appear in the record depending upon what you want to do. TESTIMONY OF JOHN C. KEENEY, DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY
GENERAL, CRIMINAL DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, ACCOMPANIED BY GEORGE ALLEN CARVER, JR., ATTORNEY, CONFLICT OF INTEREST BRANCH, CRIMINAL DIVISION
Mr. KEENEY. Yes, Mr. Chairman. I would like to take maybe about 4 minutes to summarize what's in my statement.
Mr. GLICKMAN. Sure.
Mr. KEENEY. Before I do that, I would like to introduce my colleague, Allen Carver, a long-time career lawyer in the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice, who is our specialist and heads our Conflict of Interest Branch.
Mr. GLICKMAN. By the way, I think for the record, it ought to reflect you are not a Reagan appointee, are you? You have been at the Department for some time.
Mr. KEENEY. I have been with the Department almost 35 years.
Mr. GLICKMAN. What Attorney General was there when you were appointed?
Mr. KEENEY. When I started it was J. Howard McGrath, and I have been under every Attorney General since then. I was appointed to my present position as principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General in Criminal in 1973. I have been in that position ever since.
Mr. GLICKMAN. OK, go ahead.
Mr. KEENEY. Mr. Chairman, the criminal statute administered by the Department of Justice which most closely addresses the revolving door situation with which H.R. 2554 is concerned is 18 U.S.C. 207, 208 also addresses it in some respect but 207 is the most direct. It has five relevant provisions.
(a) Bars participation for life in any matter in which the United States or D.C. the [District of Columbia] was a party or had a direct and substantial interest and in which the former employee directly and substantially participated.
(b)(i) Has a 2-year bar as to a matter in which the United States or the District of Columbia is a party, or has a substantial interest and was under the employee's general supervision, as distinct from a direct and substantial participation.
(b)(ii) A 2-year bar on appearance before the agency. It is limited to those with significant decisionmaking or supervisory authority, and it does not require a personal and substantial participation in the particular matter.
Here the United States or the District of Columbia need not be parties or interested directly in the matter.
(c) Provides a 1-year bar on representation before the agency. It is limited to those who had, again, significant decision making or supervisory authority, and need not involve specific parties, and arises after the employee leaves the agency.
The final provision is an administrative provision-207(j)—which provides administrative sanctions for violations of 207 (a), (b), and (c).
Mr. Chairman, we in the Department of Justice have no evidence that violations of 18 U.S.C. 207 are a substantial law enforcement problem.
I might point out that 207 does not prohibit a former Government employee from accepting employment with a private organization, for example, a Government contractor, regardless of the employee's dealings with that organization while he was with the Government. Nor does it prohibit such former employee from providing his new employer with inside information acquired while working for the Government.
The main thrust of H.R. 2554 is to make it a misdemeanor for any former or retired member of the armed forces, or former or retired official or employee of the Department of Defense who had significant procurement responsibilities with respect to a Government contractor to accept compensation from that contractor for 2 years after his Government service ended.
Now, we have no empirical data demonstrating the need for a statute such as H.R. 2554. Obviously, it would discourage the disclosure of inside information and reduce the risk that former officials would exert a continuing influence upon their former colleagues.
Thus, if the subcommittee concludes that the failure of 18 U.S.C. 207 to address the concern relating to selfish use of confidences and secrets of the Government by former employees, and that the provisions of 18 U.S.C. 281 and 283 are inadequate in restricting the procurement activities of retired officers of the armed forces, the thrust of H.R. 2554 might be an appropriate response.
We defer to the Congress on this policy issue because, as I said, we just do not have the empirical data to make an informed judgment as to the need for the legislation.
Mr. Chairman, that concludes my remarks. I would be glad to try to answer any questions.
[The statement of Mr. Keeney follows:]
Department of Justice
JOHN C. KEENEY
SURCOMMITTEE ON ADMINISTRATIVE LAW
AND GOVERNMENTAL RELATIONS
18 U.S.C. 207
*REVOLVING DOOR PROVISIONS"