By Alex Zank
A top lawyer for Senator John Cornyn (R-Tex.) is leaving Capitol Hill to join the lobbying firm McBee Strategic Consulting.
Cornyn announced during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing this month that Matthew Johnson, who served as chief counsel, was leaving the Hill.
Johnson will serve as an executive vice president in the advocacy group of McBee. He intends to focus on judiciary, intellectual property and patent issues. In an interview, Johnson said joining McBee was “an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.” He described the firm as “an innovative forward thinking group.”
There's a cooling off period of one year before he can lobby for clients. In the interim, Johnson will work on consulting projects.
“(Johnson) made an extraordinary contribution to the judiciary committee in the United States Senate. For the better part of a decade he’s advised me on a wide range of legal and policy issues,” Cornyn said at a Judiciary Committee hearing. Johnson started work as a counsel to Cornyn in 2005; in 2007, he rose to chief counsel.
Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, also spoke of Johnson’s contributions while working for Cornyn. “On our side of the aisle we found Matt to be a very hardworking person and contributing much to the process,” Grassley said.
Grassley noted Johnson’s work on the recent immigration reform bill, which was debated for days in committee and three weeks in Senate before its passage. Johnson said he talked with members of the Senate about certain provisions of the bill.
Johnson worked for several years on pieces of immigration legislation that involved high-skilled workers, including in technology-related fields. He also worked on the development of copyright legislation.
In 2005, Johnson received his J.D. from Notre Dame Law School. He earned his undergrad degree in 1999 from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
Contact Alex Zank at email@example.com.