GOP senator’s protest grinds Senate to a halt

Via who wrote, “I don’t see a downside to this [slowdown in Senate]. MSNBC calls this a ‘pet idea’ of Coburn’s by way of diminishing it. It might more accurately be called ‘another broken campaign promise’ on the part of Obama and the Democratic Congressional leadership.”

Yes, greater transparency and accountability: the new joke in Washington and in the mainstream media.

Oklahoma’s Coburn tries a filibuster after pet idea dropped from bill
October 14, 2009

WASHINGTON – The Senate ground to a halt Wednesday in a display of what an individual senator can do to protest his treatment by some of Capitol Hill’s most powerful barons.

Instead of passing a $33.5 billion measure funding energy and water projects and then moving on to other business, the chamber slogged through a 30-hour protest by Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., who halted further legislative business after one of his pet ideas was dropped from the bill.

At issue is one of Coburn’s top issues — greater transparency in government — as well as his sworn enemy, the powerful Appropriations Committee. Coburn had added to the energy and water bill a provision requiring reports that agencies are required to send to the appropriations panels be made available to other lawmakers and to the public. It’s part of his drive for greater transparency in government.

Coburn’s amendment won routine Senate approval in July but was dropped during House-Senate talks last month. Under Coburn’s plan, reports such as one on the Energy Department’s financial balances and a Nuclear Regulatory Commission report on barriers to building new nuclear power plants would have to be posted online right away. He’s added similar language to several other bills.

“What is it we don’t want the American people to see,” Coburn said.

The rest at MSNBC.

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