Sen. Blanche Lincoln has called for an end to the practice of senators putting secret holds on bills and nominations. She pledges not to do it. Who could object? Except, of course, all those cowards who do it.
PS -- Speaking of transparency, Sen. Lincoln, how about doing something about those groups that can run secretly financed advertising?
LINCOLN NEWS RELEASE
Washington – U.S. Senator Blanche Lincoln today called on her colleagues in the Senate to end secret procedural obstructions that have delayed confirmation of more than 100 presidential nominations awaiting consideration on the Senate’s executive calendar. The majority of these nominations are currently under “secret hold,” which occurs when Senators anonymously object to bills and nominations without revealing their identity or why they are objecting.
In a letter to Senate leadership, Lincoln pledged to not to place secret holds on nominations or legislation, and called for an end to the practice.
“Arkansans and all Americans deserve to know what elected officials are doing on their behalf. While every Senator should be able to exercise his or her rights on behalf of the constituents they represent, it should be done in the light of day. I will continue to fight for transparency and accountability in our government and for the right of all citizens to participate in the legislative process,” said Lincoln.
Most of the currently pending nominees were reported out of committees with overwhelming, bipartisan support.
According to requirements passed in sweeping ethics reform legislation in early 2007, Senators have six session days after consent is sought to proceed to consider the legislation or nomination to either permit to consideration of a bill or confirmation of a nominee or to enter a statement explaining their objection in the Congressional Record.
A copy of Lincoln’s letter is attached.