Benjamin P. Keane
As a member of McKenna Long & Aldridge’s Political Law Team, Benjamin P. Keane focuses his practice on the representation of elected officials, political candidates, PACs, political parties, corporations, non-profit organizations and other entities with respect to federal, state and local election law, campaign finance, lobbying, and ethics matters. In this capacity, Mr. Keane has counseled federal, state and local campaigns and political committees on a wide range of legal issues, and helped businesses and organizations of all sizes establish and maintain successful political law compliance frameworks. He also has experience successfully assisting clients across the country with political law investigation and lobbying audit matters involving the Federal Election Commission, the Office of Congressional Ethics, the U.S. House Committee on Ethics, the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission, and various other state and local regulatory bodies.
As part of his practice, Mr. Keane also counsels corporate clients on compliance with federal, state and local “pay-to-play” laws, and is a frequent contributor to the firm’s award-winning Pay to Play Law Blog, which is one of the leading online communities for the analysis of legislative, regulatory and legal developments affecting corporations and organizations that interact with, lobby and sell to government. Mr. Keane is also a recurring contributor to the firm’s Politics, Law and Policy Blog, which provides bipartisan insight on public policy issues affecting a wide-range of industries.
In representing clients across the country, Mr. Keane brings significant experience navigating the intersection of law, politics, and public policy. Prior to joining McKenna Long & Aldridge, he served as a Visiting Legal Fellow in the Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation in Washington, DC. During that time, he worked under the direction of former U.S. Attorney General Ed Meese on a range of law and policy issues, established valuable relationships with Members of Congress, congressional staff and public policy organizations, and gained valuable expertise in legislative drafting and the composition of congressional testimony. Having spent several years working in the Research, Communications, and Strategic Planning Departments of the Republican National Committee, Mr. Keane also has great familiarity with various aspects of political campaign work, including policy development, communications strategy, grassroots organization, and fundraising compliance.
Mr. Keane’s legal experience also extends to representing parties in white collar/government investigation matters and complex commercial litigation disputes. While working as an associate at another Am Law 100 law firm, Mr. Keane was a key contributor in a high-profile audit committee investigation of a Fortune 500 company and helped secure a summary judgment victory for a national financial entity in a multi-million dollar defamation action. In addition, he previously gained valuable experience working on fraud and criminal investigation matters while serving as a legal intern in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.
Mr. Keane is a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law. While at UVA, Mr. Keane was a recipient of the Dillard Fellowship, which is given to recognize excellence in legal research and writing. Additionally, he served on the managing boards of The Journal of Law and Politics, The Federalist Society, and the Student Legal Forum.
- Served as Outside Deputy National Campaign Counsel to Newt 2012, the presidential campaign committee of former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Newt Gingrich.
- Served as co-counsel to Georgia Governor Nathan Deal and his gubernatorial campaign committee, Nathan Deal for Georgia, in the successful defense of eight separate ethics matters filed with the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission (GGTCFC).
- Counseled Members of Congress, federal candidates, and their campaign committees on compliance with federal campaign finance, gift and ethics rules.
- Counseled statewide officials, legislators, and their campaign committees on compliance with applicable campaign finance, gift and ethics rules.
- Counseled PACs, political parties, and other political organizations on compliance with federal, state and local campaign finance, gift and ethics rules.
- Counseled Fortune 500 and other large private companies on the development and monitoring of political law, PAC, and lobbying compliance frameworks at the federal, state and local levels.
- Counseled federal, state and local lobbyists and lobbyist principals on compliance with federal, state and local disclosure and reporting requirements.
- Counseled financial and investment advising firms and a range of government contracting clients on compliance with federal, state and local “pay-to-play” laws.
- Conducted in-house ethics and lobbying compliance training seminars for both corporate and governmental clients.
- Advised corporate clients on the political law and government affairs ramifications of mergers, acquisitions, and spin-offs.
- Counseled a wide range of tax-exempt, non-profit organizations and trade associations on the development and monitoring of political law and lobbying compliance frameworks at the federal, state and local levels.
- Assisted numerous clients with the development, formation and compliance aspects of 501(c)(4) social welfare organizations designed to advocate with regard to a wide range of public policy issues.
- Assisted numerous clients with the development, formation and compliance aspects of 501(c)(3) charitable organizations designed to educate the public on a wide range of public policy issues.
- Assisted numerous clients with the development, formation and compliance aspects of federal independent expenditure-only political committees (“Super PACs”) and their state-level equivalents.
- Assisted in the representation of Members of Congress before the Office of Congressional Ethics and the U.S. House Committee on Ethics.
- Represented the campaign committees of federal elected officials and candidates in investigative matters conducted by the Federal Election Commission (FEC).
- Represented the campaign committees of state elected officials and candidates in investigative matters conducted by the GGTCFC.
- Successfully advised registered lobbyists and lobbyist principals in audit investigations conducted by the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) and other state regulatory bodies.
- Assisted with the drafting of proposed state legislation and regulatory comments for a range of lobbying clients.
- Assisted private real estate investment companies with zoning compliance advice and counsel in various state and local jurisdictions.
- Successfully represented clients before the Georgia State Bar in matters involving complaints alleging the unauthorized practice of law.
- J.D., University of Virginia School of Law, 2006
- B.A., Princeton University, 2001
- Contributor to the Award-Winning Pay to Play Law Blog.
- Contributor, Political Law and Campaign Finance, Politics, Law and Policy Blog.
- “Georgia State and Local Government Contracts,” Thompson Reuters, Contributing Author on Vendor Lobbying Laws, (2012-13 ed.).
- Co-author, “Overcriminalization and the Constitution,” The Heritage Foundation, Legal Memorandum, No. 64, April 13, 2011.
- Co-author, “Overcriminalization: An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure,” Inside ALEC, February 2011.
- “Private Securities Suit ‘Reform’: Undermining Economic Recovery to Aid and Abet Lawyers,” Washington Legal Foundation, Critical Legal Issues: Working Paper Series, No. 172, April 2010.
Seminars and Presentations:
- "Election Law Seminar Presentation," The 14th Congressional District & DeKalb County GOP Candidate Training Conference, May 26, 2012, Atlanta, GA.
- “Effective Corporate Political Engagement and Compliance in the 2012 Election Year,” McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP, January 2012, Washington, DC.