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

News Roundup:

  • DISCLOSE Act news:
    • Sam Stein and Arthur Delaney provide a detailed rundown of the exemption made for the National Rifle Association in the DISCLOSE Act. (The Huffington Post)
    • The National Association of Manufacturers is warning lawmakers that voting for the DISCLOSE Act could count against them in the group’s annual report card. (National Journal)($)
    • House Democrats are facing a backlash from government reform groups and liberals for their deal with the NRA. (Roll Call)($) (The Hill)
    • Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) is trying to assuage the concerns of organized labor over the disclosure requirements in the DICSLOSE Act. (National Journal)($)
    • Rep. Van Hollen said that House Democrats are not planning to create an exemption from the DISCLOSE Act for labor organizations. (The Hotline)($)
    • The NRA is promising to uphold its end of the bargain by not opposing the DISCLOSE Act. (Roll Call)($)
    • In an editorial, the Wall Street Journal criticizes the NRA for supporting the DISCLOSE Act. (The Wall Street Journal)($)
  • Office of Congressional Ethics News:
    • The Washington Post has more on the eight House members who are under investigation by the OCE for the timing of fundraisers held near a vote on the financial regulation bill. (The Washington Post)
    • The Hill is reporting that the OCE investigation is focusing on an amendment offered and then withdrawn by Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC) subjecting auto dealers to the oversight of a new government finance watchdog. (The Hill)
    • Roll Call editorializes against a push by some House members to weaken the OCE. (Roll Call)($)
  • Earmark bans and the slow appropriations process this year are frustrating earmark lobbyists. (Roll Call)($)
  • Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) asked the Securities and Exchange Commission’s inspector general to investigate the revolving door between SEC staffers and the finance industry. (The Wall Street Journal)($)
  • Former House Democratic Leader Richard Gephardt has been hired to lobby for food-services company Sodexo. (The Hill)
  • According to the Center for Public Integrity, at least four federal lawmakers have sold their holdings in companies tied to the Gulf oil spill. (Center for Public Integrity)
  • Expenditure reports show that Chief Administrative Officer Dan Beard spends around $2.9 million a year on temporary staffers. (Roll Call)($)
  • Government Technology talked to Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board Chair Earl Devaney about creating and running Recovery.gov. (Government Technology)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 6/16:

Senate:

  • None

House:

  • Press Freedom in the Americas, House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, Wednesday, June 16, 2:00 p.m., 2172-Rayburn

Relevant bills introduced 6/15:

Senate:

  • A bill to amend the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 to provide electric consumers the right to access certain electric energy information, and for other purposes; to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. 3487

House:

  • A bill to strengthen the partnership between nonprofit organizations and the Federal Government, and for other purposes; to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and in addition to the Committees on Education and Labor, and Science and Technology, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned. H.R. 5533

Transparency events scheduled for 6/16:

  • None

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