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Regardless of what you think about the current health care legislation being debated on Capitol Hill, being able to read it before it goes to the floor for a vote is the right thing to do and I’m glad to see a Senator from Missouri calling for it.

But will the Dems listen?

From Politico:

As the health care reform bill moves to the Senate floor, a key bloc of moderate Senate Democrats and an independent called on Senate Majority Leader Reid to increase the process’ transparency.

Specifically, the senators called on Reid to post legislative text and CBO scores online 72 hours before the first floor vote. They asked that all amendments be posted before debate begins. And the amended bill and CBO score should be posted three days before a final Senate vote and before the Senate votes on a conference committee report.

Democratic Sens. Blanche Lincoln, Evan Bayh, Mary Landrieu, Claire McCaskill, Ben Nelson, Mark Pryor, Jim Webb and Independent Sen. Joe Lieberman signed the letter.

“As their democratically-elected representatives in Washington, D.C., it is our duty to listen to their concerns and to provide them with the chance to respond to proposals that will impact their lives,” the senators wrote. “At a time when trust in Congress and the U.S. government is unprecedentedly low, we can begin to rebuild the American people’s faith in their federal government through transparency and by actively inviting Americans to participate in the legislative process.”

Simply put, this administration promised transparency and they should push the Congress to deliver…especially with legislation this contentious. Because it’ll expose anything truly controversial and save a lot of headaches in the long run.

Anybody disagree?

8 COMMENTS

  1. I love this idea, but I worry that 72 hours is just long enough for detractors of a bill to go pull out, misinterpret, and publicize the “death panels” section, but not long enough for supporters to respond with the truth. I think 120 hours would be better.

  2. I think the Dems will listen because it’s Dems who are making the call. It’s long been clear that no bill passes without the bloc of moderate Dems in the Senate on board. The GOP can bitch and snipe from the sidelines but these eight Dem Senators and as many as six or seven others are the crucial votes.

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