It looks like Apple might be stepping up its presence in Washington as Politico reports that Apple has hired a new firm to represent them.

Apple’s 2010 lobbying forms reflect the company has been an active participant in those conversations, speaking to lawmakers and federal regulators about patents, research funding, free trade agreements and taxes. It’s new outside firm, Fierce, Isakowitz and Blalock, has handled some of those issues for other industry clients such as CTIA, the National Cable and Telecommunications Association, Time Warner Cable and the Coalition for Patent Fairness.

Among the lobbyists handling Apple’s work is firm president Mark Isakowitz, who previously headed up federal relations for the National Federation of Independent Business. Isakowitz’s resume also includes work on former President George W. Bush’s transition team, and time spent as press secretary for Rep. Paul Gilmor (R-Ohio), a former top member of the House Commerce Committee.

With all of the money Apple’s competitors like Adobe, Microsoft, Google and others have been spending, it only makes sense that Apple keeps up with the Joneses.