JUST AS campaign finance reform laws in the 1970s led to unanticipated PAC abuses in the 1980s, the Ethics Reform Act of 1989 already seems to be having unhealthy side-effects.
One of these is an exodus of talented employees from federal service. The former drug czar William Bennett recently declined to become chairman of the Republican National Committee because, as of Jan. 1, he would have been barred from honoring a book contract. . . .
Bennett is not the only one to encounter these new regulations. A disturbingly high number of high-ranking officials left government at the end of last month because, had they waited until after New Year's, new regulations would prohibit them from getting jobs with private firms interested in employing their expertise. . . .