In the early 1990s he served the House Democratic Leadership as Executive Director of the Democratic Study Group and held senior staff positions on the Senate Labor Committee, the Human Resources Committee and the Judiciary Committee. He served for a time as Chief of Staff to Senator Howard Metzenbaum of Ohio . When Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle was elected Democratic Leader in 1994, Mr. Johnson was appointed Staff Director for the Senate Democratic Leadership and served as Daschle's chief legislative and communications advisor for five years .
He was appointed in 1999 as President Bill Clinton's Senior Advisor for Policy and Communications. In this capacity, he was charged with coordinating the message and communications strategies designed to promote the Administration's legislative and policy goals. He remains an influential lobbyist and corporate advisor , as well as a source of comment for the press .
Since the end of the Clinton administration he has worked in the private sector. In 2001 he founded a professional political advisory group called the Harbour Group. Then in 2005, he co created the Glover Park Group strategy company where he currently works. He remains a supporter of the Clintons and recently attended a policy dinner with Hillary Clinton.