And you thought only Orrick got into trouble with politicians.
Our friends at the Austin American-Statesmen report that at least one Texas pol isn’t happy that Palo Alto’s Cooley Godward Kronish was hired to do work for a state pension fund.
State Sen. Robert Duncan said that the Teacher Retirement System of Texas' new outside law firm, Cooley, “is rife with potential conflicts of interest.” The paper reports that “At the committee hearing, Duncan said partner [Roel] Campos' firm, Cooley Godward, ‘has one of the nation's largest practices in venture capital and private equity,’ which could cause conflicts as the retirement system continues its push to move about 30 percent of its assets in harder-to-value alternative investments.”
(Apparently Duncan has read Cooley’s marketing materials).
Duncan then asked Campos: "If [the retirement system] invests in a private equity firm that is a client of your firm, is that not a conflict of interest?"
And Campos responded: "It could be," but added that law firms, including Cooley Godward, are experienced in setting up "Chinese walls" to prevent the sharing of information between lawyers whose clients have competing interests.
Conflicts at big firms? Who ever heard of such a thing?! The outrage must be stopped!
— Zusha Elinson