James R. Tucker Jr. has more than 15 years of political and policy experience. He combines this knowledge with a network of government contacts to provide strategic advice to and advocacy on behalf of clients at the federal and state levels.

Practice & Background

Prior to joining Akin Gump in 1999, Mr. Tucker served as legislative counsel to Rep. Bob Inglis (R-SC). In that capacity, he was responsible for advising the congressman on all issues before the House Judiciary Committee. He also served as an aide to former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich in 1996 and to Sen. Paul D. Coverdell (R-GA) in 1993-94. Mr. Tucker also has significant political experience, having worked on the 2000 and 2004 Bush/Cheney campaigns, the 1996 Dole/Kemp campaign and the 1992 Bush/Quayle campaign. He also served in various capacities at the 2000 and 1992 Republican National Conventions. He has also worked for or volunteered on behalf of a number of Senate and congressional races and is active with the Republican Governors Association.

His practice in the public policy arena spans many disciplines including:

Strategic Advocacy

Mr. Tucker works collaboratively with clients to develop a comprehensive strategy to achieve their public policy objectives, whether they are offensive or defensive in nature. He combines an in-depth knowledge of the policy making process and an extensive network of contacts in Congress and the Administration to achieve results. He has worked effectively on behalf of such clients in the energy, healthcare, technology, telecommunications, transportation and agricultural sectors.

Congressional Investigations

The power of Congress to investigate is as broad as its power to legislate, and organizations engaged in such proceedings are confronted with a unique set of challenges. The legal proceedings involved in congressional investigations are distinct from those in any other forum, and investigations have political and public relations pitfalls as well. Mr. Tucker has helped clients navigate these proceedings while successfully protecting their legal, political and reputational standing.

Federal Marketing and Appropriations

Mr. Tucker works with clients to position themselves to secure federal appropriations and grants for meritorious projects. Competition for these funds is often intense and the process for securing them has grown increasingly complex. Mr. Tucker has a proven track record of working with clients to identify relevant sources of funding, developing compelling proposals to policy makers and navigating the process to ensure that key application and disclosure deadlines are met.

Additionally, he works with clients to maximize opportunities for sales of products and services to federal and state governments. The public sector represents significant opportunities for companies of all sizes and Mr. Tucker helps clients navigate the unique and often complex aspects of this market.

Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) Political Counsel

Mr. Tucker works with companies and investors to identify and minimize the political risks associated with mergers and acquisitions. He has helped develop and execute targeted strategies to condition the environment in which a transaction is reviewed in including those deals subject to antitrust review by the Department of Justice (DOJ) or the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) or a national security review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).

Political Intelligence

Changes in the legislative and regulatory landscape in Washington can have a profound impact on a company’s economic outlook. Mr. Tucker works with corporate managers and investors to identify and analyze the economic implications of policy decisions. He works to provide clients with real-time information and also to identify long-term trends that will impact a company’s or sector’s bottom line.

Grassroots / Stakeholder Advocacy

Mr. Tucker often manages grassroots or stakeholder advocacy campaigns on behalf of clients. Such efforts focus on identifying, educating and mobilizing local and state opinion leaders in support of a policy objective. This may involve providing community support for or opposition to a regulatory filing or legislative proposal or simply advancing an organization’s broader community relations objectives.

Local Counsel Management

Legislative or regulatory issues will often play out across multiple venues and jurisdictions simultaneously. Mr. Tucker works with clients to ensure that their positions are well positioned by identifying local counsel suited to the issue and coordinating messaging so that the client maintains a unified approach.

Mr. Tucker received his B.A. in politics in 1992 from Washington and Lee University and his J.D. in 1997 from Mercer University, where he was presented the award for Outstanding Achievement in Legal Writing.

Speaking Engagements

  • Presented to executives and representatives from the general counsel’s office of Columbia University on the reach of privacy regulations and the likelihood for expanded reach via legislation/regulation (10/05/2011)
  • “Privacy and Data Protection Legislation: The Risks and What Corporate Counsel Need to Know” (10/05/2011)
  • Speaker at a CLE presentation on proposed comprehensive federal privacy legislation.