CREW Recommends Updating the Rules of the House of Representatives for the 114th Congress
Today Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, the Sunlight Foundation, and the OpenGov Foundation issued recommendations for improving transparency and accountability in the House of Representatives.
Democracy is an iterative process. This newly updated list of recommended rules changes is a roadmap for representatives as they look towards the 114th Congress. The House has opened up in prior years in response to public suggestions and we hope these ideas will spur further improvements. In summary, we recommend:
- Adopting a chamber-wide presumption in favor of public access, including proactive disclosure of many documents and the institution of an open source software policy.
- Providing greater public access to draft legislation prior to consideration by the House and its committees and subcommittees, including creating context for amendments.
- Further strengthening the Office of Congressional Ethics.
- Auditing and creating an index of congressional information.
- Fixing lobbying disclosure forms.
- Reexamining the accreditation of journalists.
- Creating a special committee on congressional effectiveness to examine systemic problems.
- Creating new transparency mechanisms, including an ombudsman, an advisory committee on public access to information, and better ways of managing legislative support agencies.
- Addressing oversight of national security issues.