Rep. Charles Rangel faces an adjudicatory hearing before the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct--better known as the House Ethics Committee--this morning. We'll are covering the whole hearing on Sunlight Live, delving into the charges of violations of ethics rules that in some cases go back years. Rangel stands accused of everything from soliciting donations to a nonprofit center that bears his name from interests with business before the Ways and Means Committee, which he chaired at the time, to abusing his parking privileges in the House garage. (A full list of charges is available here).
The ...Continue reading
Top donors to lawmakers fund their official portraits
For 24 years, Rep. Bart Gordon, D-Tenn., has represented the sixth district of Tennessee, rising to become the chairman of the House Science Committee. Now he is retiring, but he is planning to leave his likeness behind in the committee room, in the form of an official portrait paid for by corporate donors such as Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, and Northrop Grumman, which are also top contributors to his campaign fund. These companies have contributed a total of $34,000 to the portrait fund.
Another lawmaker, House Agriculture Chairman Collin Peterson, D-Minn., who is slated for an easy win in the ...Continue reading
States of Transparency: Tennessee
The Open Government Directive encouraged states to put valuable government data online. In this series we're reviewing each state's efforts in this direction.
This week: Tennessee
The open government site for the state of Tennessee offers checkbook-level spending data, but would be extremely frustrating to serious researchers looking to do their own analysis. It's just not laid out in a computer-friendly way.
Currently, spending information is available in PDF format. It isn't searchable by vendor name or spending type, and isn't downloadable in any machine-readable format. And it's updated ...Continue reading
FEC Guts Post-Abramoff Reform
The Federal Election Commission — the supposed referee of fair campaigning — has just created an ethics loophole big enough for lobbyists to fly a corporate jet through.Continue reading
The Machine Can Make It For Us
So, the House Ethics Committee is planning on reviewing the 2007 travel rules and one area they hope to fix... View ArticleContinue reading
Caribbean Island Trip and Ethics Loopholes
Privately paid travel may have fallen over the past year, and more precisely since 2005, but some lawmakers are still... View ArticleContinue reading
Paid Travel Down for Congress
Thanks to those guys, Jack Abramoff and pals, lawmakers are taking far fewer privately paid trips overseas. Newly enacted ethics... View ArticleContinue reading
In Broad Daylight: The Banks Bought Congress
Budgeting political risk helped Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and financial services companies avoid the kind of scrutiny they needed from... View ArticleContinue reading
Ethics Launches Rangel Probe
The House Ethics Committee officially launched a probe of the troubled finances of Rep. Charles Rangel, the House Ways and... View ArticleContinue reading
Countdown to Reform Mandate
On Friday, August 1, 2008, the Clerk of the House must launch a public database on the Clerk’s web site... View ArticleContinue reading