This article is co-authored by Pillsbury and Guidehouse.
The House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, the Congressional Oversight Commission created under the CARES Act, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery (SIGPR) and the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee (PRAC) are each pursuing investigations into pandemic response spending, including scrutinizing relief funds for their legal permissibility as well as perceived conflicts of interests.
The practical reality is that by the time an investigation has begun, congressional leaders have decided to invest time and resources into the inquiry. Whether on Capitol Hill or at the state capital, political lines also are drawn every day. The attorneys in our Public Policy group work with politicians and staff members on both sides of the aisle in the House, the Senate and the Executive Branch. Our extensive and bipartisan contacts throughout government help optimize our effectiveness with investigators.
Pillsbury lawyers have successfully represented a wide range of leaders and organizations that have been subjected to congressional scrutiny, including private research universities, foreign investors, Fortune 500 companies, construction companies, government contractors, nonprofit organizations and technology companies.
Our team successfully represented one of the first five public companies investigated by the new House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis for potential misuse of Small Business Administration (SBA) funds. Applying our legal and lobbying skills, we worked with investigators on both sides of the aisle to help our client demonstrate its compliance with relevant rules and regulations and achieve its desired result to retain its SBA funding.
Pillsbury’s team achieves success through close collaborations with our clients and prompt and informed communications with investigators that demonstrate respect for the legitimacy of a congressional committee’s inquiries while promoting our clients’ interests. Entities or individuals which may be vulnerable to congressional scrutiny are well advised to assess their potential risks and develop a legal and political response plan.