Monday, December 08, 2008

Utah's schizophrenic legislative openness (& a request to Ric Cantrell)

In some ways, public access to our state legislative process is remarkable. In just the past few years, we have been able to follow our legislature much more closely. Utahns have gone from "What are the SOBs doing?" to "What are those SOBs doing?!"

The state website has searchable bills, agendas, audio of public hearings and now, as of yesterday, house bills from 1896. It is a legislature/history geek's heaven. (One request to Ric Cantrell, whose (in)famous Senate Site provides more information from GOP senators' perspective, but who we hope is all-powerful: Any chance you can get them to post the 2-volume proceedings of the 1895 Constitutional Convention online? If you can, we pledge to forego "Chris Buttars is _______" posts for an entire week.)

After all that, though, the most important legislative work -- the one in which the real legislating occurs -- remains totally secret: GOP caucus meetings. Come on, guys; you were doing so well! You don't like it when courts don't follow your intent, but you don't tell them what your real intent is. Come on, now, open up . . .

4 comments:

JM Bell said...

Having learned a lesson (one of the last one's the UT GOP did learn) from Nixon, the GOP caucus doesn't record those meetings, except in a book bound in human skin and written with the blood of the innocents ...

Clatu! Verata! Nefff-cough, cough!

Voice of Utah said...

They may not record them, but how about just opening them up to the public? I know, I know...

Cantrell said...

Way ahead of you, V of U. Omnipotent as I am, our stellar staff posted this a year ago. Enjoy!

I'll tell CB to expect a reprieve. Merry @#$%! Christmas.

Voice of Utah said...

Be still my heart! My head may explode from no Buttared popcorn, but I'm a happy Constitution geek.