2Day in #OpenGov 9/13/2012




  • Obama’s schedule doesn’t show the whole picture: The Obama administration likes to note the fact that they release the President’s public schedule every day. But, an analysis of the White House’s Flickr account and various other related social media accounts highlights the fact that the President often attends events that don’t make the schedule, even though they are fairly innocuous. (Politico)
  • MADISON opens up: When Darrell Issa (R-CA), chairman of the House Oversight Committee, announced his collaborative bill markup project MADISON he promised that it would be released as open source. Yesterday that promise became reality when the code for MADISON was posted on GitHub. (Tech President)
  • Rewarding a whistleblower: The IRS issued, what appears to be, the largest reward ever given to a whistleblower. Bradley Birkenfeld, a former banker at USB who exposed the Swiss Bank’s work to help Americans avoid their taxes, was awarded $104 million from the IRS. The US government settled with USB for $780 million in 2009. (POGO)
Campaign Finance
  • Illinois disclosure law stands: A federal appeals court in Chicago upheld an Illinois law that requires entities to register and report as a political committee if they spend at least $3,000 on independent expenditures in one year, even if their main purpose is not influencing elections. (Lobby Comply)
  • Candidates can’t stop chasing the donation: President Obama and his Republican rival Mitt Romney are not slowing their fundraising pace as the November election draws near. Both candidates have declined public financing, the first time that has happened since the system’s advent, and now need to spend valuable campaigning time chasing donations. (New York Times)
  • Carter weighs in: Former President Jimmy Carter spoke out against the influence of money in politics, calling the American electoral system “one of the worst…in the world…almost entirely because of the excessive influx of money.” (Politico)
  • Transcribing local government in the UK: Local governments in the UK do not have to produce a written record, called a Hansard there, of proceedings. MySociety is hoping to change this by building technology that can make the practice the rule rather than the exception on a local level. (mySociety)


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