Former U.S. congressman lobbies for the Ethiopian government

The Ethiopian government has added former congressman Joe Garcia to its team of lobbyists from Mercury Public Affairs, new Justice Department filings show. The one-term Florida Democrat is the first former lawmaker to represent the Ethiopian government, which the Biden administration has accused of “ethnic cleansing” in the Tigray region since a civil war there broke out almost a year ago.

— Mercury, who documents filed with the Justice Department show was hired by Ethiopia’s Ambassador to the U.S. Fitsum Arega at the end of August, is Addis Ababa’s only remaining representation in Washington after the lobbying firm Venable let its contract with the Ethiopian Peace Ministry expire at the end of April. The team from Mercury also includes Avery Rose Royster, a former aide to Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Ashley Bauman, a DNC alum, and William Ogborn, a State Department alum. … CONTINUE READING