The Washington Post

The Shusters: All in the family

 Rep. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) left. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic) Rep. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) at left. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

One surefire way to get an issue in front of a congressional committee? Hire a lobbyist with the same last name as the chairman.

In the transportation world, the Shuster surname is as golden as the Kennedys. So it’s little wonder that companies looking to infiltrate Capitol Hill would turn to a law firm that employs a Shuster.

Last time we checked in with Robert Shuster – brother to Transportation & Infrastructure Chairman Rep. Bill Shuster, and son of Bud Shuster (known for unapologetically shoveling money at Pennsylvania public works projects when he chaired the same panel in the mid-to-late 1990s) — he’d been hired by the town of Chevy Chase as a lawyer against the Purple Line light rail project.

Now another Shuster client has the undivided attention of brother Bill’s committee. The president of Canada Steamship Lines, which lobbying disclosure data tells us has hired Shuster to lobby Congress on its behalf, testified Tuesday before a T&I subcommittee.

The short sea shipping operation opposes new Environmental Protection Agency fuel emission standards.

Shuster e-mailed us to say he’s only had “very limited” action with the steamship lines, and he told them, as he tells all clients, “that I do not and will not lobby my brother.”

But when transportation is the family business, it’s hard to imagine shipping issues aren’t the focus of dinner-time chatter around the Thanksgiving table.

Colby Itkowitz is the lead anchor of the Inspired Life blog. She previously covered the quirks of national politics and the federal government.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Get Zika news by email

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Comments
Show Comments
The Democrats debate Thursday. Get caught up on the race.
The big questions after New Hampshire, from The Post's Dan Balz
Can Bernie Sanders cut into Hillary Clinton's strength in the minority community and turn his challenge into a genuine threat? And can any of the Republicans consolidate anti-Trump sentiment in the party in time to stop the billionaire developer and reality-TV star, whose unorthodox, nationalistic campaign has shaken the foundations of American politics?
Clinton in New Hampshire: 2008 vs. 2015
Hillary Clinton did about as well in N.H. this year as she did in 2008, percentage-wise. In the state's main counties, Clinton performed on average only about two percentage points worse than she did eight years ago (according to vote totals as of Wednesday morning) -- and in five of the 10 counties, she did as well or better.
Upcoming debates
Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Feb. 25: GOP debate

on CNN, in Houston, Texas

Campaign 2016
Where the race stands

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.