Here is Wednesdays look at transparency-related news items, todays congressional committee hearings, and transparency-related bills introduced in Congress yesterday.

News Roundup:

  • Campaign finance news:
    • Lobbyists for multinational corporations say the DISCLOSE Act infringes on the free speech rights of American affiliates of foreign-owned companies and sends a chilling signal to potential foreign investors. (The Hill)
    • A provision in both the House and Senate versions of the DISCLOSE Act would change how House and Senate campaign committees and candidates can coordinate in regards to independent expenditures. (Roll Call)($)
    • Independent groups are spending four times as much on House and Senate races this year than in 2006. (Politico)
  • Here is the report I mentioned yesterday on vacant oversight and transparency positions in the government. (The Center for Public Integrity)
  • Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sen. Chuck Grassley (D-IA) have offered an amendment to the Senate financial reform bill that would try and eliminate a senator’s ability to place secret holds. (The Hill)
  • Consumer groups are concerned that a bill regulating how websites can handle user information doesn’t go far enough in protecting privacy. (The New York Times)
  • Retiring Rep. Bart Gordon (D-TN) is on a short list to head a DC-based lobbying firm for credit unions. (The Atlantic)
  • Restrictions on lobbyists were implemented as part of the stimulus and TARP debate but no such restrictions were brought up during the health care debate. (National Journal)($)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 5/5:

Senate:

  • None

House:

  • Hearing on Electronic Communications Privacy Act Reform, Judiciary: Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, Wed, May 5, 2 p.m., Rayburn-2141

Relevant bills introduced 5/4:

Senate:

  • None

House:

  • None

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