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DNCC hires Denver law firm

  Legal Marketing  -   POSTED: 2007/12/14 10:45

Politically connected Denver law and lobbying firm Isaacson Rosenbaum has been chosen as outside counsel for the Democratic National Convention Committee (DNCC) as it prepares for next summer's event here.

The firm and one of its top attorneys -- Mark Grueskin, a Democrat and onetime legal counsel and legislative aide to former Colorado Gov. Richard Lamm -- will help the committee navigate federal election rules and local laws, working with the DNCC's on-staff general counsel, Susana Carbajal.

"We're kind of a legal defensive secondary," Grueskin said. "We'll watch and see how things develop, and we'll help tackle whatever legal issues require more staffing or a different kind of expertise."

He said Isaacson Rosenbaum has identified 10 areas where the DNCC may need its help before and during the Aug. 25-28 convention, from contract negotiation and employment law to campaign finance rules "and just plain political advice."

One of the firm's key roles will be to help the DNCC comply with Federal Election Commission (FEC) rules covering convention operations, Carbajal said. "Because we receive federal funds, we do have to spend those funds according to the FEC and their regulations," she said.

It's customary for a party to hire a local law firm in the convention host city to help with on-site legal work. The assignment is considered a plum for the chosen firm -- and a sign of close ties between the firm and the party.

"We're awfully proud [to be chosen]," Grueskin said. "It's gratifying that ... they hired us because there are so many different kinds of things that our law firm can do that they might need."

Carbajal -- an attorney for the Austin, Texas, firm of Brown McCarroll and a former aide to President Bill Clinton -- was named DNCC general counsel in April. She said she recommended Isaacson Rosenbaum to her committee after interviewing several local attorneys and firms.

She said she wanted a firm with solid experience in election-finance and public-policy law as well as with good relations with local leaders, and Isaacson Rosenbaum offered both strengths.

"One of the main reasons we chose [the firm] is because of Mark Grueskin. ... He was a driving force in our selection," she said.


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