Thursday, June 6, 2013

Powerful Heritage Staffer Heads to the Hill

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has hired Michael Franc,The Heritage Foundation's Vice President of Government Relations, the think tank's top Capitol Hill hand.  According to his Heritage website, Franc is now a Distinguished Fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

Here is what Politico has to say:
Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy — the man charged with counting  votes — is moving to beef up GOP leadership’s credibility with the right by hiring Mike Franc, The Heritage Foundation’s vice president of congressional relations.
The strategy: Franc’s close, personal relationships with conservative lawmakers combined with strong policy chops and the imprimatur of the Heritage brand will serve as a stamp of approval for a GOP agenda that’s been stymied.
Franc will be involved in both counting votes and policy advice — a job that should help leadership better tailor legislation to the realities of the conservative House. That will be key beginning this summer and fall for expected high-stakes fights over the budget, debt ceiling and immigration, not to mention any legislative response to the various Obama administration scandals.
Franc, who last worked on the Hill for Dick Armey, is a stalwart of the right and has served as an unofficial adviser to dozens of conservatives on Capitol Hill. He’s attended the conservative Republican Study Committee meetings for years, organized Heritage’s successful freshman orientation and routinely fields phone calls from lawmakers.
The mere mention of Franc elicited cheers from some of the best-known Republicans on Capitol Hill.
Franc has spent the bulk of his career at Heritage, where he ran House outreach before taking over the organization’s overall congressional outreach. He must be very eager to get back into House Republican leadership. In 2010, Franc made more than $250,000 from Heritage, according to tax filings. He’ll very likely make roughly half that in McCarthy’s office.

Heritage Foundation has deep connections to Congress.  On April 4, 2013, former Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) succeeded Ed Fuelner as President of the think tank.

The Heritage Foundation was recently ranked as the 18th best think tank in the world by the annual University of Pennsylvania think tank rankings.  It was rated the 9th best think tank in the US.  It was also ranked as the world's best think tank in terms of use of the Internet and social media.