Thursday, May 24, 2007

House Passes Lobbying & Ethics Reform Measures

The House today voted overwhelmingly to bar lawmakers from accepting gifts, meals or trips from lobbyists and to require disclosure by lobbyists who round up campaign donations and "bundle" them together for members of Congress. The House voted earlier in the year to change its own rules, but this goes farther.

The reforms have been a long-time coming, having met resistance from entrenched Democrats and Republicans. The Senate endorsed a similar rules change earlier this year, so now a final bill must be reconciled by the two chambers and signed into law.

While many of us would like to see even more reforms, it is good something is getting passed. I can't imagine the consequences of the Congress, under Democratic leadership, not passing an ethics overhaul after the Republicans' many scandals contributed so greatly to their downfall.

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