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Lawmakers, Lobbyists Square off on the court: Via Politico’s Huddle

The 15th annual congressional charity basketball game tips off tonight at the Smith Center at The George Washington University. Congressional staffers take on lobbyists at 6 p.m., followed by the lawmakers vs. lobbyists game at 7:30 p.m.

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Small Business Coalition Launches

The Coalition of Small Business Innovators is launching today, to push small-business advancement, spur changes to the tax code and support early-stage research.  VennSquared is managing the coalition and running the message and media, and Venn Strategies’ Stephanie Sliverman is handling grasstops. Coalition members include: Algae Biomass Organization, Biotechnology Industry Organization, Advanced Medical Technology Association and TechAmerica.

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Lobbying World

Venn Strategies hired Drew Littman to be a principal at the public affairs and government relations firm. He comes from the Washington office of the biofuel manufacturer Solazyme, where he served as vice president. Littman also served as Sen. Al Franken’s (D-Minn.) chief of staff and as a legislative director for Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.). He has other experience in the private sector as well, working as a principal at the Podesta Group and as president of his firm, Littman Associates.• Wexler & Walker Public Policy Associates has promoted Joel Malina to become its chief executive officer and general manager. He started at the firm in 1992 as an intern, and most recently worked as the executive vice president and managing director. Wexler & Walker also promoted Jody Hoffman, Tom Carpenter and George Rogers to its management committee, which “guides the strategic direction of the firm.” They all have extensive connections on Capitol Hill.

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Democrats’ latest tax target: Private corporations

Senate Democrats introduced legislation Tuesday that would prevent student loan interest rates from doubling this summer. Its $5.9 billion cost would be paid for by making it harder for owners of so-called S corporations to avoid paying Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes on some of their earnings.

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CBO Scoring Misses Billions of Dollars in Potential Long-Term Savings from Effective Obesity Prevention Policies, According to New Study

Current methods for estimating the costs and savings of federal health legislation miss billions of dollars in potential long-term returns from effective obesity prevention policies, according to a new study released today by the Campaign to End Obesity. Changing the way cost estimates are created would give policymakers a clearer picture of costs and savings, the report concludes.

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Another Tragedy, But More Excuses Not to Act

Once again, our country has been rocked with an unthinkable act of violence … a senseless act in Boston on a day that is normally filled with stories of personal triumphs and jubilee. Sadly, it left us asking the all-too familiar questions: Why, and how can this be prevented from happening again?

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Venn Hires Matt Pearce

Venn Strategies LLC has hired Matt Pearce, the firm announced yesterday. He comes to Venn from the U.S. Green Building Council. Before that, he managed Rep. Earl Pomeroy’s (D-N.D.) 2010 campaign and served as a Capitol Hill aide. He will be an assistant vice president at Venn.

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No Banking on the Women’s Vote

On Tuesday night at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, there was much speculation and anticipation for the first public appearance by Hillary Clinton since she left her role as secretary of state, and she did not disappoint the audience.

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Spotted… Venn2 Partnership FETE draws crowds

Downtowners headed up Massachusetts Avenue on Tuesday evening for an evening at the British Embassy. The event — which was celebrating VennSquared Communications’ and Venn Strategies’ new partnership with British public affairs firm Simon Whale. Spotted: Jane Adamsof Johnson & Johnson; Betsy Mullins; Scott Mulhauser; Stephanie Silverman of Venn Strategies; Michael Meehan of VennSquared; and Todd Flournoy of the Flournoy Group.

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K Street Files: Both Sides Rev Up for Wage War

Calls to increase the minimum wage by President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress have triggered pre-emptive action on both sides of the debate.

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The Hill: K Street readies for tax reform fight

Washington’s influence industry sees Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) designation of tax reform as H.R. 1 as just the latest sign that the issue will be front-and-center this year. Accordingly, lobbyists are ramping up their outreach to Capitol Hill as lawmakers look to roll back tax breaks and lower rates for the first time since 1986.

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Silverman Praises Healthy Choices Act

The Campaign to End Obesity is applauding legislation introduced by House Ways and Means Committee Democrat Ron Kind that includes a wide range of policies that aim to tackle the obesity epidemic. Kind’s Healthy Choices Act aims to improve prevention and treatment opportunities, increase access to physical activities for adults and children, expand nutrition training and realign transportation policies to promote healthier lifestyle, and support research.

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