Here is Wednesday’s look at the week’s transparency-related news items, congressional committee hearings, transparency-related bills introduced in Congress, and transparency-related events.

News Roundup:

  • After announcingsubcommittee leaders, (Federal Times) Rep. Issa (R-CA), Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform committee, will hold his first hearing on the foreclosure crisis and TARP. (Politico)
  • Ranking Member of the Oversight committee, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD), sent a letter urging Chairman Issa to heed President Obama’s call to elevate political discourse out of the muck and to avoid engaging in “silly” investigative probes. (The Hill)
  • The Senate will likely address filibuster reform next week as part of a rules reform package suggested by Democratic Sens. Tom Harkin, Tom Udall, and Jeff Merkley. (Politico)
  • President Barack Obama instructed federal agencies to modernize and improve thetransparency of theirregulation of industry and commerce,requiring among other things thatagenciespublish their rulemaking and enforcement actions on the Internet and to weed out outdated and unneeded rules. (Federal Computer Week)
  • Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) is expected to join Sen. Kent Conrad (D-ND) in announcing retirement. (The Hill)(Politico)
  • House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) do not plan to offer any early endorsements for the 2012 presidential campaign. (Politico)
  • A new Justice Department unit, the Professional Misconduct Review Unit, will investigate allegations of misconduct by the Justice Department’s Office of Professional Responsibility. (Washington Post)
  • The General Services Administration has replaced Webcontent.gov with HowTo.gov to improve customer service across the federal government. (Federal Times)
  • The West Virginia Supreme Court ruled unanimously that a gubernatorial election must be held this year to fill the remainder of Sen. Joe Manchin’s term, stating that the constitution was not meant to allow an acting Governor – one not elected to the position – to hold it for over a year. (Politico)
  • Republicans suggest that the separation of checks and balances has become a modern and slightly incorrect division of labor where Congress has forgotten that it, too, needs to evaluate the constitutionality of laws. (Washington Times)
  • Government officials discuss the benefits and difficulties introduced by social media, including the danger of rumors spreading like rapid fire and the necessity of having different voices on social media platforms so that citizens feel like they are engaging in a conversation, not just getting a press release in a different format. (Government Executives)

Relevant committee hearings scheduled for 1/19:

  • None.

Relevant bills introduced:

  • H.J. Res. 20. A joint resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to limit the number of consecutive terms that a Member of Congress may serve; to the Committee on the Judiciary.
  • H. Res. 37. A resolution electing Members to certain standing committees of the House of Representatives; considered and agreed to.

Transparency events scheduled for 1/19:

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