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Plaintiffs are appealing the decision by a federal judge earlier this year that affirmed an administration policy of disallowing lobbyists on advisory panels.
The plaintiffs - all association-related lobbyists - filed the appeal in U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in late November.
The suit was filed originally in 2009 when five of the six lobbyists were dropped from a government advisory panel after the ban on federally registered lobbyists on advisory boards was implemented. The lobbyists claimed the policy violated the First Amendment by depriving them of a valuable government benefit, to serve on industry trade advisory committees that provide advice to the Commerce Department or U.S. Trade Representative.
In October of this year, Judge Amy Berman Jackson found that serving on a panel is not a "valuable government benefit…but even if it is, plaintiffs have not been denied that benefit on a basis that infringes upon their constitutionally protected rights and they have not been penalized for or inhibited in the exercise of their rights."
The ban is to reduce the influence of special interests in Washington, administration officials have said.