Trump team to ban lobbyists in administration

Donald Trump

WASHINGTON — Two top Republicans working with President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team told reporters in a phone call Wednesday evening that they’re taking steps toward one of Trump’s campaign promises — to “drain the swamp” in Washington.

Trump communications director Jason Miller and Republican National Committee spokesman Sean Spicer announced anyone being vetted for a high post in the administration must provide a termination of lobbying form if they are registered lobbyists. In addition, when they leave the government, they will be banned from being a lobbyist for five years as part of the agreement to serve in Trump’s administration.

“They will be signing a lobbying ban form … Not only will people will not be able to registered state or federal lobbyists, but when they leave government, they will be banned from being a registered lobbyist for five years,” Spicer said.

He added: “Why that is crucial is that it goes back to Mr. Trump’s goal of making sure that people aren’t using the government to enrich themselves and using their service in government to do that.”

The move is on par with a purge within the transition team that took place earlier this week — after Vice President-elect Mike Pence took over the efforts from New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

A high-ranking Trump insider said the so-called “purge” focused only on lobbyists, though sources told CNN it was a move to part ways with staff associated with Christie.

Trump’s team didn’t immediately respond to an inquiry about more details on the ban.