The law under which Nofziger was convicted is plainly unconstitutional. Congress, in placing restrictions on the conditions of employment for people who serve in the executive branch, is interfering in the operation of that branch. The law denies to individuals in Nofziger's position the basic right to speak freely and act as representatives for groups seeking access to the executive branch. The fact that an individual is paid or wields considerable influence should not be grounds for denying him the right to speak.
Clearly, a person with recent, high-level experience in the executive branch has the potential to be an effective advocate for groups needing representation at that level. As a matter of public policy, people such as Nofziger should be encouraged to become paid advocates.
This is not the only instance in which Congress has sought to restrict public participation in government. Laws which restrict campaign contributions--again, to reduce the "undue" influence of effective and highly committed individuals over outcomes--should also be repealed.