Ag Committee Dems Balk at Transparency Once Again

October 22, 2009

FYI a version of this release went out to the following districts: John Boccieri (OH-16); Leonard Boswell (IA-03); Dennis Cardoza (CA-18); Travis Childers (MS-01); Jim Costa (CA-20); Kathy Dahlkemper (PA-03); Brad Ellsworth (IN-08); Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (SD-AL); Steve Kagen (WI-08); Jim Marshall (GA-08); Eric Massa (NY-29); Scott Murphy (NY-20); Earl Pomeroy (ND-AL); Mark Schauer (MI-07); Kurt Schrader (OR-05); and Tim Walz (MN-01).

For Immediate Release:                                                                                                                    Contact: Press Office
October 22, 2009                                                                                                                                          (202) 479-7070

 Travis Childers Balks at Transparency Once Again
Votes to Kill Measure Requiring Legislation Be Made Available to the Public

 Washington- Travis Childers proved once again that he prefers to let his party craft their big-government machinations behind a cloud of secrecy when he voted late yesterday to kill a measure that would have shined the light on important legislation. Childers sided with his Democrat colleagues on the House Agriculture Committee to squelch a Republican amendment that would have required all committee legislation to be available online within 24 hours of consideration and all amendments to be available online within 24 hours of passage. (Source: Geoff Koss, “Panel Approves Derivatives Regulation Bill,” Congressional Quarterly, 10/21/09)

Unfortunately, Childers’ vote is only the latest signal of his fundamental opposition to openness and transparency in government. Thus far, Childers has refused to join a bipartisan effort to bring forth a bill requiring the House to make legislation available for 72 hours before a vote. Though several Democrats have joined this effort, Childers still refuses to sign his name to the discharge petition required to bring the bill out of committee.

Recent polling shows that Childers’ ongoing efforts to mask his party’s reckless agenda is squarely at odds with most Americans, who overwhelmingly believe that Congress should make its work available to the public:

“Eighty-three percent (83%) of U.S. voters say legislation should be posted online in final form and available for everyone to read before Congress votes on it. The only exception would be for extreme emergencies.” (“83% Say Congress Should Post Bills Online For All to Read Before Voting On Them,” Rasmussen Reports, 9/30/09)

“Travis Childers’ ongoing war against transparency is proof positive that his top priority in Washington is passing his party’s agenda behind closed doors,” said NRCC Communications Director Ken Spain. “Childers is all too happy to lock the American people out of the legislative process only to stick them with the consequences. Maybe if Childers and his fellow Democrats embraced a little more transparency they would finally realize that their reckless agenda is a non-starter with voters across the country.”

Will Travis Childers ever embrace transparency in government? Given his track record, Mississippi voters shouldn’t hold their breath.