All hail Jon Stewart and those clever Daily Show writers for very adeptly (and hilariously — though not in a very safe for work way) reporting last night how quickly and quietly Congress and President Obama combined forces to gut major transparency provisions of the STOCK Act passed last year. In an election year, they rushed to pass this reform legislation (and garner public kudos for doing so), but now with less of a spotlight on their actions, they rushed to undo the bill.
Readers of our blog know that Sunlight’s lobbyist, Lisa Rosenberg, has taken the charge to inform you about this as it happened nearly two weeks ago. As she put it, the Senate’s action to approve the removal of STOCK Act transparency provisions was an epic failure on Thursday, May 11, especially since they did so invoking unanimous consent. Then the House followed suit and rushed the vote in mere seconds the next day, as most House members had already left Washington for recess. The House also completely lapsed on fulfilling their “read the bill” rule to wait three calendar days to deliberate on the legislation — to, you know, actually give citizens time to know what their elected officials were voting on before it was a done deal. (This would have also given the press more time to inform Americans of these shenanigans.)
If you only have time for one clip, watch the second STOCK Act piece from last night’s Daily Show:
If you’re interested in seeing exactly how the new law changes the original STOCK ACT, check out this redline version our Policy team created. (The action starts on page 4.)
And here’s the first clip about the STOCK Act from last night’s Daily Show:
Not up to date on the STOCK Act? Read our previous posts here.