Person

Michael Sozan

Nationality:

American

Occupation:

Think Tank Scholar

Employer:

Center for American Progress

Michael Sozan, a former Democratic Party political operative and left-leaning governance policy scholar, is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a think tank based in Washington, D.C. with close ties to the Democratic Party establishment.

Background

Following his graduation from law school, Michael Sozan, served as a judicial law clerk for the Virginia Court of Appeals. Thereafter, prior to becoming involved in politics proper, Sozan practiced international corporate law at Arnold and Porter LLP, specializing in technology and telecommunications. Later, switching to public sector law, Sozan served as an attorney in the executive branch of the United States Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission. During this time, Sozan also worked on pro bono cases involving asylum seekers and immigration issues. [1]

Starting in 2004, Sozan began working on Capitol Hill in various Democratic senatorial offices, at first for a stint of roughly two years as counsel in the office of then-U.S. Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), and then from 2006 to 2008 and as the legislative director for Sen. Jim Webb (VA), whom he assisted with legislation expanding education entitlements for veterans having served after 9/11. Afterwards, for a period of roughly six years, Sozan worked as chief of staff to then-U.S. Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO), acting as the senator’s “principal point person” on his legislative initiative to repeal the U.S. military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. [2]

Center for American Progress

In 2015, Sozan joined the Center for American Progress (CAP), a think tank based in Washington, D.C., strongly associated with the Democratic Party establishment, as senior vice president for government affairs and in that capacity managed the organization’s interactions with federal, state, and local legislators. In 2017, Sozan became a senior fellow at the institution, focusing on governance policy issues. [3]

Activity

On September 26, 2019, Sozan published an article on the blog of the Center for American Progress, “The Founders Would Have Impeached Trump for His Ukraine-Related Misconduct,” arguing that there existed a constitutional rationale for impeaching then-President Donald Trump in relation to a spate of activities that took place during the summer of that year between representatives of the Ukrainian and United States governments, particularly in relation to a congressionally mandated military aid package of $400 million. [4] [5]

On July 29, 2020, Sozan published an article on the blog of the Center for American Progress, arguing that the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated legally mandated strictures on normal movement warranted legislation that would allow voters in all states to register to vote online and on the day-of voting (also known as ‘same-day registration’). [6]

In March 2022, Sozan submitted a formal letter of support to the California State Assembly in support of A.B. 1819, “The Stop Foreign Influence in California Elections Act,” which would limit political donations made by U.S. corporations with between one (in the case of a single foreign principal) and five (in the case of multiple foreign principals) percent of their shares owned by foreign investors. [7] [8]

References

  1.  “Michael Sozan: Senior Fellow.” Center for American Progress. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/people/sozan-michael/ ^
  2. “Michael Sozan: Senior Fellow.” Center for American Progress. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/people/sozan-michael/ ^
  3. “Michael Sozan: Senior Fellow.” Center for American Progress. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/people/sozan-michael/ ^
  4. Sozan, Michael. “The Founders Would Have Impeached Trump for His Ukraine-Related Misconduct.” Center for American Progress. September 26, 2019. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/article/founders-impeached-trump-ukraine-related-misconduct/ ^
  5. Ballhaus, Rebecca; Restuccia, Andrew; and Hughes, Siobhan. “Trump Put Hold on Military Aid Ahead of Phone Call With Ukraine’s President.” Wall Street Journal. September 24, 2019. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.wsj.com/articles/president-trump-repeats-criticism-of-biden-in-impromptu-u-n-appearance-11569254230?mod=hp_lead_pos3 ^
  6. Sozan, Michael. “States Must Boost Voter Registration During the COVID-19 Pandemic.” The Center for American Progress. July 29, 2020. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/article/states-must-boost-voter-registration-covid-19-pandemic/ ^
  7. “AB-1819 Political Reform Act of 1974: contributions and expenditures by foreign-influenced business entities.(2021-2022).” California Legislative Information. February 7, 2022. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billCompareClient.xhtml?bill_id=202120220AB1819&showamends=false ^
  8. Sozan, Michael. “California Bill Would Limit Political Spending by Foreign-Influenced U.S. Corporations.” American Progress. March 2, 2022. Accessed March 21, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/article/california-bill-would-limit-political-spending-by-foreign-influenced-u-s-corporations/ ^
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