Ending campaign secrecy in the Senate?

Ending campaign secrecy in the Senate?

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Part of the whole accountability and transparency thing requires politicians to disclose campaign finance information. That needs to be done electronically, so that records can be placed online, searched, and scrutinized.

For whatever reasons, a pair of Senators have been implicated in the successful delay of the requirement to do this, Senate S.223. Check out Pass223.com for more.

The good news is that there's a new spirit of accountability in Washington, Ellen Miller from Sunlight Foundation hopes that S.223 will finally pass:

Sunlight allies and regular readers of the blog will no doubt know about the work we and our allies have invested to pass a bill to require senators to file their quarterly campaign finance reports electronically. This included last year’s Pass S. 223 campaign that many of you had a hand in. But a small number of senators have held it up via secret holds and poison pill amendments. However, a more robust Democratic majority and the support of upwards of 17 or so Republican senators had given the bill’s sponsors and transparency advocates heart that this might be the year we succeed in passing it. It’s expected that Feingold will re-introduce the bill in the next few weeks.

As a reminder, the legislation would require senators to match the practice of the House, which file their quarterly disclosure reports electronically and directly to the Federal Election Commission. This speeds up dramatically the time the FEC takes to post the information online. Currently, senators file paper copies of their reports with the Secretary of the Senate, who transcribes them electronically and then sends the data to the FEC.

More information available from The Hill.

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One Comment

Colleen

Hi Craig,
this sounds a lot like an implementation of Apture that we at Apture just did: http://is.gd/b3UF (please pardon the plug.)We are seeking to make the web more clear and connected – and it seems like we're not alone. I hope that the time has come for more accountability and tools on the web that make it easy and effective to find this information.

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