This Sunday was the filing deadline for congressional and presidential second quarter FEC reports. Currently both the FEC and PoliticalMoneyLine are posting these reports in real time. Unfortunately, thanks to Mitch McConnell and other obstructing Republicans, we can’t view Senate campaign finance reports in real time because they aren’t filed electronically. If McConnell and his party would let the Senate Campaign Disclosure Parity Act (S.223) pass we wouldn’t have to wait another couple of months to find out how much our Senators raised and spent. In the meantime, let’s take a look at which members of Congress are caught up paying legal fees.
Congresspedia reports that there are currently 10 members of the House of Representatives under investigation. Not all of the reports have been posted yet, so you will notice that Rep. William Jefferson, who is certain to pay exorbitant legal bills, is not yet listed. Some names that pop up that aren’t on Congresspedia’s list of members under investigation include Don Young and John Boehner. Former Reps. Mark Foley and JD Hayworth clearly saved some money in their campaign accounts for a reason.
Friends of Mark Foley: $277,367
Alaskans for Don Young, Inc.: $242,306
JD Hayworth for Congress: $102,126
Hastert for Congress Committee: $59,884
Lewis for Congress Committee: $54,756
Friends of John Boehner: $52,938
John T. Doolittle for Congress: $50,584
Rick Renzi for Congress: $25,000
Alan Mollohan for Congress: $22,671
Tim Murphy for Congress: $6,585
Congresspedia has expanded its platform to include new features on policy issues and legislation, adding to its great wealth of information on members of Congress. These new resources complement its existing profiles on legislators. We think that the new features will give citizens access to insider information on issues and legislation, and offer opportunities to collaborate with policy experts. Here's a link to the portal home page.
Congresspedia now has:
* 14 new federal policy and legislative portals for experts and interested citizens to update and improve articles on various policy issues and on specific legislation. Here's a really terrific example on Telcom policy.
The Senate took some steps forward last week to make its activities more transparent, but honestly, some of the most innovative and exciting stuff to make government more transparent is coming from individual lawmakers themselves (and in one case government) and enterprising organizations and citizens.
First, take a look at Freshman Senator Jon Tester posting of his daily schedule. How refreshing is this!? I hope others will pick up on his efforts to be really transparent about how he's spending his time, and on those of Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand's too. (Sen. Tester's schedule and Rep. Gillibrand's can be found on their pages on Congresspedia too.) We hope that some of our readers will send what these two lawmakers are doing to their representatives as models for what it means to execute the public's business in a public way.Continue reading
One of the great delights of my west coast trip was meeting Craig Newmark, the genius behind Craig's List. Having been introduced to Craig's List by my daughters, and used it myself to rent an apartment and sell a car, it was a personal treat to meet this Internet celebrity.Continue reading
Congresspedia now has links to the Colbert Report for each member interviewed in his "Better Know a District" series. You would never know that learning about your member of Congress could be so entertaining. Check it out, like Craig Newmark has, on the home page of Congresspedia.org.Continue reading