Transparency and Government Reform
The mission of government matters, and the work we do matters; however, we can’t lead effectively if we don’t have the people’s trust. That’s why I believe Justice Brandeis said it best when he stated, “Sunlight is the best of disinfectants.” To rebuild the people’s trust in our government, we need a government that does all it can to be transparent, as well as provide the public with the tools they need to hold our government accountable.
As founder and co-chair of the bipartisan Congressional Transparency Caucus, I have worked hard to make the federal government more accessible and open to the public. My comprehensive transparency legislation, the Transparency in Government Act (TGA), includes reforms that will shine a light on every branch of the federal government, strengthening our democracy and promoting an efficient, effective and open government. I have also prioritized legislation that would make reports Congressional policy reports easily accessible to the public and have called on the Supreme Court to allow cameras in the courtroom.
Under the Trump Administration, I have become increasingly alarmed at how the President skirts disclosure requirements, has limited access to visitor logs, and blatantly disregards ethics regulations. In response, I have introduced bills like the COVFEFE Act, to treat social media postings like other presidential documents, and the MAR-A-LAGO Act, which would require disclosure of visitor logs at the White House and other Trump properties where official business is conducted. As a member of Congress, I believe it is my duty and that of my colleagues to hold the Executive Branch accountable and carry out our constitutional responsibility to provide thorough oversight of the federal government.
By taking necessary actions we can restore Americans’ faith in government and prove to the public that we are worthy of the responsibility we’ve been entrusted with. Increasing transparency and accountability in government is not only the key to improving public trust in the government; it is the key to improving the government.
Since he was first elected to Congress, Rep. Quigley has introduced the Transparency in Government Act (TGA) every session because he believes the public should have more access to information so they can hold elected officials accountable.
Rep. Quigley introduced the COVFEFE Act to expand the Presidential Records Act to preserve social media postings. It increases accountability and protects historical documents in a 21st century world.
Rep. Quigley introduced bipartisan legislation to improve the public and congressional staff’s access to Congressional reports through the creation of a searchable, central hub. This will help the American people be better informed so they can hold their elected officials accountable.
Rep. Quigley introduced the MAR-A-LAGO Act to require disclosure of visitor logs at the White House and other Trump properties where official business is conducted.
Rep. Quigley serves as the co-chair on the bipartisan Congressional Transparency Caucus and holds regular briefings on the challenges Congress faces as it works to bring greater transparency to Capitol Hill.
More on Transparency and Government Reform
U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) sent a letter to Representative James Clyburn (SC-06), Chairman of the Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis and House Majority Whip, expressing strong concerns about possible misuse of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds by United States Secretary of Education Betsy Devos. He cited dramatic changes that have been made to the plan for the distribution of funds, in an apparent effort by DeVos to advantage small, private, often religious schools.
As of this week, over 1.5 million Americans have contracted coronavirus and over 90,000 have died – including more than 4,100 here in Illinois. And last month, nearly 22 million Americans filed for unemployment. I know that essential workers can’t wait for support and families can’t wait to pay rent or to keep food on their tables. I was proud that Congress mobilized quickly to pass three pieces of smart, bipartisan legislation but the crisis hasn’t ended, and Congress can’t consider our work done either.
Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) introduced the Court Access Amid the Pandemic Act, which would authorize video and teleconferencing of judicial proceedings during the COVID-19 emergency period. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced federal courts across the country to change their daily operations to protect the wellbeing of the Justices, court staff, and the public. Quigley’s bill would enable public access to these proceedings while experts recommend against gatherings.
Specifically, this bill:
Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05), House Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman on Financial Services and General Government and co-chair and co-founder of the Congressional Transparency Caucus, sent a letter to Chief Justice John Roberts requesting that the Supreme Court allow real-time audio and video access to all Court proceedings. Quigley argued that, in a time when live-streaming of appellate courts is highly normalized, modernization of the Supreme Court is overdue.
Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05), a member of the House Committee on Appropriations, questioned Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler during a hearing on the Agency’s Fiscal Year 2021 budget request.