Ex-Obama Aide Fined $90,000 for Chicago Lobbying Violation

Feb 16, 2017

Credit Flickr Creative Commons/Mark Warner

The Chicago Board of Ethics has voted to fine a former aide to President Barack Obama $90,000 for illegally lobbying Chicago's mayor on behalf of Uber.  The board found David Plouffe violated city ethics rules when he failed to register as a lobbyist after contacting Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Plouffe was trying to help the ride-hailing company with regulations for picking up travelers at Chicago airports. The board fined Uber $2,000 for hiring a lobbyist who violates the city's lobbying laws.  An Uber spokesman says the company regrets the mistake, and will comply with the board's assessment.

The ethics board says that Plouffe and Uber argued that he should only be subject to a $1,000 fine. The board said a $1,000 fine would encourage unregistered lobbying activity.