2Day in #OpenGov 2/14/2013

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NEWS ROUNDUP:

  • Following a major corruption scandal donors withheld nearly $300 million in aid from the Ugandan government. The country will increase domestic borrowing in order to replace the shortfall. (TrustLaw)
  • A group of government watchdogs is publicly opposing a request made by a bipartisan group of lawyers to roll back recently adopted changes to the Office of Congressional Ethics’ rules and allow for public comment. (Roll Call)
  • It’s rare for the White House to miss an opportunity to collect data on citizens interested in its actions and last night’s State of the Union was no different. The Citizens Response Tool for the 2013 State of the Union allowed citizens to comment on and share parts of the speech provided they cough up their email address. (Politico)
  • Iraq is close to finalizing a lobbying contract with the Podesta Group. This will be the first time that Iraq has signed up with a lobbying firm in the post-Saddam Hussein world. (Politico)
  • A major wholesaler of helium filled balloons is looking to secure its markets during a serious helium shortage by lobbying Washington. Helium and Balloons Across America has hired the Alpine Group to lobby on its behalf. (Public Integrity)
  • President Obama’s actions on campaign finance issues have failed to back up his strong rhetoric in the three years following his public criticism of the Supreme Court for its Citizens United decision. (NPR)

RELEVANT BILLS INTRODUCED:

  • S. 123Voter Empowerment Act of 2013.
  • S.217. A bill to amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to require the Secretary of Education to collect information from coeducational elementary schools and secondary schools on such schools’ athletic programs, and for other purposes.

HAPPENING TODAY 2/14: 

HAPPENING TOMORROW 2/15:

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