Group to Focus on Government Openness and Accountability; Will Support Education, Legislation and Oversight
WASHINGTON D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL) announced the formation of the bipartisan Transparency Caucus, which will serve as a resource for Members of Congress on bipartisan open government initiatives. The caucus will promote legislation that requires federal information to be freely accessible, as well as advocate for new initiatives that support transparency.
“I am excited to be joined by my friend Rep. Mike Quigley in launching a new caucus to promote a greater culture of transparency and openness in government,” said Rep. Issa. “Sunlight is indeed the best disinfectant. On a bipartisan basis this caucus can bring about real changes to the way our government does business.”
“Mr. Issa and I strongly believe that an open and accountable government should not be a partisan issue,” said Rep. Quigley. “Democrats and Republicans alike should serve and be accountable to the people, not a special interest. We need to work together if we’re going to ensure that taxpayer dollars are spent responsibly and lawmakers are operating honestly and effectively.”
With significant advances in technology, it is now possible for the Federal government to offer searchable, sortable, downloadable information online that citizens can access to see for themselves the results of government programs. The Caucus will seek to move current practices forward and encourage easier access for the American public through education, legislation, and oversight.
Additionally, the caucus will work to monitor the enforcement of federal laws and directives already in place that promote transparency. Of particular focus will be President Obama’s Open Government Directive, which requires agencies to make their data sets available online and sets standards for transparency in government.
In addition to Quigley and Issa, the following Members have indicated their interest in joining the Caucus to date: Melissa Bean (D-IL), Jason Chaffetz (R-UT), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Vern Ehlers (R-MI), Bill Foster (D-IL), Steve Israel (D-NY), Walter B. Jones (R-NC), Jim Jordan (R-OH), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Doug Lamborn (R-CO), Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO), Patrick McHenry (R-NC), Walt Minnick (D-ID), Jared Polis (D-CO), Tim Ryan (D-OH), Aaron Schock (R-IL), Mark Souder (R-IN), and Jackie Speier (D-CA).
Since his election to Congress one year ago and for the decade prior as a Cook County Commissioner, Rep. Quigley has made reform, transparency, and fiscal responsibility the cornerstones of his legislative agenda. His first actions in Congress included a bill to ban corporate earmarks and another to help states like Illinois strengthen their anti-corruption laws by removing federal roadblocks to reform. Quigley was also a cosponsor of H. Res. 554 to require that legislation and conference reports be available online for 72 hours before consideration by the House. Rep. Quigley currently serves as a Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
As the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Rep. Darrell Issa has been at the forefront of the effort to rein in government waste, fraud, abuse and mismanagement. He has been a leading voice for accountability and transparency in government.