Today in #OpenGov 9/24/2013


National News

  • Google was having email issues yesterday, but maybe we can forgive them as they were busy launching a new tool to help emerging democracies design a more perfect union for themselves. The web giant’s new site, Constitute, is a collaboration with the Comparative Constitutions Project that draws from the world’s constitutions. (The Verge)
  • The complicated tale of Doug Band, President Clinton’s closest aide who has run into trouble after building a business perched on his access to his boss. (New Republic)
  • While many defense firms slowed their PAC giving in August, Lockheed Martin kept up a brisk pace, with nearly $200,000 in donations to federal candidates and committees via its Lockheed Martin Corporation Employees’ PAC. (Roll Call)
  • Republicans made good use of disappearing campaign finance restrictions to tighten their hold on power in state legislatures across the country over the past couple of years. Now Democrats, getting over some of their distaste for super PACs and the like, are looking to use the unlimited money machines two even the scales a bit. (POLITICO)

International News

  • Research suggests that parliamentary monitoring organizations are failing to engage with certain groups, specifically women and those with lower incomes.  (Opening Parliament)
  • Three years after reporting a bribe on Indian site IPaidABribe.Com a student from Bangalore saw his effort pay off. The student paid a bribe in order to receive a receipt for registering for an identity card and action was recently taken against the official in question. (Tech President)

State and Local News

  • A former Republican Candidate for the Boston City Council is launching a super PAC that aims to turn urban voters to the GOP. Robert Fortes, who is also a charter school lobbyist, describes himself as a “proud” black Republican. (Public Integrity)
  • The San Diego City Council is floating a draft open data policy that could go into effect as early as January 1, 2014. The policy would create a Chief Data Officer, release data on a rolling basis, and include some notable exemptions. (Voice of San Diego)

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