Thursday, December 01, 2005

Time to CLEAN the House...

Via MyDD we learn about the canidate to replace jail bound Rep Duke Cunningham (R-CA), Francine Busby, has a plan to clean the house.

1. Ban All Outside Financial Relationships With Government Contractors

The first proposal would ban any member of Congress from having any outside financial relationship with a government contractor. The shame that Duke Cunningham has brought on San Diego from his cozy relationship with Mitchell Wade revealed huge loopholes in our system. In the business world and local governments, it is a clear-cut conflict of interest for members of policy making and oversight boards to have outside financial relationships with business partners. Congress should be no different. A defense contractor should never be involved in a deal to buy or sell a house, boat, condo, buck-knife or anything else with a member of Congress. This has to stop. My proposal will end these sugar-daddy relationships once and for all.

2. Ban Members Promoting Specific Businesses For Government Contracts of Regulatory Favors

Secondly, my proposal would ban members of Congress from using their official position to give government contracts or regulatory favors to specific businesses. Representatives are elected to work for their districts and they should. However, their conduct crosses an ethical line when they lobby for specific companies to receive government contracts or gain regulatory favors. Government contracts and decisions need to be based on a real need and done by whomever can do the best job at the least cost to taxpayers, not on which business has the best connections in Washington. Recent allegations of profiteering by companies with strong connections to Congress that received no-bid contracts for services in Iraq and Hurricane Katrina recovery have highlighted the need for this reform.

3. Eliminate Anonymous Appropriations

My third proposal calls for a ban on anonymous appropriations earmarks to reform our out-of-control budget process. The exposure of Cunningham’s backroom wheeling and dealing gave us all a peak at just what goes on behind closed doors, away from microphones and television cameras. We saw how members of congress swap favors to payback big contributors. This wide-scale abuse of the public’s trust has resulted in the bloated budgets that have exploded in recent years and contributed to record levels of deficit spending.

4. Ban All Privately Funded Congressional Travel

I propose to eliminate all privately funded travel by members of Congress. If members want to go to Idaho to go hunting like Cunningham did, they can pay for it themselves just like ordinary Americans do. I understand that members of congress often must travel as part of their jobs. My proposal does not prevent any member of Congress from taking fact-finding trips. They can do this as they have for many years, through the established process for official congressional travel that requires reasonable proof that a trip is legitimately related to their job. This is not more or less than any business requires. Too often members of congress forget who they represent. Too often they are golfing at Pebble Beach courtesy of a big oil company when they should be in Washington working to lower gas prices.
This is the type of thing that we can hammer Dave Camp on, this blog has already reported where Con. Camp sits with this issue.

This is the type of thing that Huck '06 should be talking about. Real proposals about how to fix the problem.

It's the type of thing to move this intrepid blogger from non-plussed to excited about a campaign.


Blogger John B. said...

Yes, this is the kind of thing we should be doing. Democrats won't need to sell out if each of us does our part with time and resources. It will take a lot of us though to offset one rich wacko.

12:03 PM  

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