Jason Kaune leads Nielsen Merksamer’s political law section and has served as faculty for the Corporate Political Activities conference since 2003. He practices political law and government ethics, including the election, lobbying disclosure, conflict of interest, gift and gratuity, and campaign finance laws of federal, state and local governments.
Mr. Kaune advises corporations, advocacy groups, individuals, non-profit organizations and governments on the increasingly complex regulation of the political intersection of the public and private sectors in the United States. For nearly twenty years, he has pioneered the firm’s national compliance practice, building client-oriented resources and systems with his political law colleagues that have served as benchmarks in the regulated community. His clients include the nation’s largest technology, pharmaceutical, energy, telecommunications, media, publishing, investment and consumer product companies.
He is one of the leading political attorneys in California, advising individuals, entities and government agencies on election law and conflict of interest matters. He serves as counsel and treasurer for political action committees, advocacy groups, social welfare organizations, independent expenditure committees and ballot measures on topics ranging from land use restrictions to government reform.
Mr. Kaune represents and advises clients in regard to their dealings with state and local government ethics agencies across the country, with local counsel as necessary. His expertise includes “pay to play” restrictions on government contractors and the financial industry, the Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA), Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA), California’s Political Reform Act (PRA), and similar laws at every level of government.
He is a past president of the California Political Attorneys Association and member of the Council on Governmental Ethics Laws (COGEL) and other professional associations. He has been appointed to the Advisory Commission of the Standing Committee on Election Law for the American Bar Association (ABA). He also serves as an elected trustee of the Orinda Unified School District, a public school district in the San Francisco Bay Area. Before joining Nielsen Merksamer, Mr. Kaune worked in the private and non-profit sectors, on a presidential campaign, and as an extern for a U.S. Federal District Court Judge. He is an honors graduate of Yale College and the University of California’s Hastings College of the Law and earned a master in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.