The former staff director and chief counsel of the House Judiciary Committee has joined the lobby shop at Covington & Burling.
Richard Hertling, who spent time on Capitol Hill and at the U.S. Justice Department, joins as of counsel in the public policy and government affairs practice. His arrival bolsters Covington's practice, which recently added Senator Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) and Representative Howard Berman (D-Calif.) to its stable of lobbyists.
Hertling clerked for Judge Henry Politz of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit after completing law school. He later was a trial attorney for three years in the Civil Division of DOJ and served on the Senate Judiciary Committee staff. During his seven years with the committee, Hertling was chief counsel and staff director for three subcommittees.
He was the minority staff director for Senator Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.) on the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee and senior counsel of the investigation into campaign fundraising of the 1996 presidential election.
Hertling returned to DOJ from 2003 to 2007 where he was both acting assistant attorney general in the Office of Legislative Affairs and the principal deputy assistant attorney general in the Office of Legal Policy.
In February 2007, Hertling responded to a letter from four senators requesting additional information about one of seven U.S. Attorneys dismissed by DOJ in December 2006. In his letter to the senators, Hertling defended the dismissal of the attorneys, stating it was not intended to influence any ongoing investigations.
Hertling left Main Justice to be the domestic and legal policy advisor to Thompson's presidential campaign before returning to the Hill in 2008. During Hertling's most recent stint on Capitol Hill, the House Judiciary Committee was instrumental in the overhaul of the U.S. patent system, dogged the Department of Homeland Security on the subject of illegal immigration and drafted the STEM Jobs Act, which failed to come to a vote in the Senate.
Hertling was not immediately available for comment.
In a written statement, Dan Bryant, the chair of Covington's public policy practice, said Hertling has "as wide and deep a grasp of policy issues as anyone in Washington."