Senator Don Nickles announces formation of lobbying group

Wednesday, December 8th 2004, 6:18 am
By: News On 6

(AP) _ Sen. Don Nickles plans to stay in Washington and head a lobbying and business venture company when he retires next month.

``I love the private sector, and I love public policy,'' Nickles said in announcing the formation of The Nickles Group on Tuesday. ``This is the ideal fusion of the two.''

Nickles said the firm will provide strategic advice, policy development and political execution for clients seeking help in dealing with Congress or the executive branch of the government.

He will be barred for a year from lobbying his former colleagues in Congress. Nickles, 56, once rose to the second-ranking Republican in the Senate and will leave Congress in January as chairman of the Senate Budget Committee.

He has lived in the Washington area since he was in his early 30s and sold his home in Ponca City more than a decade ago.

He joins the ranks of other Oklahoma lawmakers who went from the public sector into lobbying positions in the private sector.

Former Reps. J.C. Watts and Bill Brewster head companies with Washington offices and represent clients before Congress and federal agencies.

Former Reps. Steve Largent, Dave McCurdy and Glenn English, and ex-Gov. Frank Keating run large trade associations headquartered in the Washington area.