Originally published: March 28, 2011
Last updated: March 29, 2011 - 1:51pm
Robert Gibbs may be the latest Washingtonian wooed by the stock options and geek cache of Silicon Valley.
Al Gore headed west to try his hand at venture capital after the 2000 race. President Bill Clinton press secretary Joe Lockhart also joined Oracle for a stint back then to burnish the bad-boy image of Larry Ellison. More recently, last year Jill Hazelbaker became head of communications at Google. She had served as communications chief for McCain 2008 and worked on media strategy for Michael Bloomberg’s 2010 reelection. For campaign and White House veterans, the allure of Silicon Valley is a chance to earn money but also something more. “What you see with Facebook is what Google has experienced — a tech company, after a while, experiences growing pains,” said Bill Whalen, research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, who follows California and national politics. One growing pain is how to navigate the federal government. “Facebook, which is going to go public next year, has to think about becoming a political target, becoming an example of how technology is leading us astray,” Whalen added.
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