All Remaining Obama Supporters, Please See Nurse Ratchet Immediately!

Last week, the Senate and House passed a secret, barely-debated bill to limit the scope and effectiveness of the STOCK Act that was passed last year to limit corruption and promote transparency of public officials’ financial activity. The purpose of the STOCK Act, which stands for STOP TRADING ON CONGRESSIONAL KNOWLEDGE, is described by the Center of Responsive Politics:

The STOCK Act, which was passed by Congress a year ago, requires online posting of the personal financial disclosure statements that lawmakers and congressional candidates, the president and vice president, members of the cabinet and high-ranking congressional and executive branch staff file each year. The data is supposed to be made available in machine readable format that is to be ready to download this October.

And at the time of its passage, Obama had this to say:

“It’s a good first step,” he said after passage. “And in the months ahead, Congress should do even more to help fight the destructive influence of money in politics and rebuild the trust between Washington and the American people.”

Watchdog groups had hailed the passage of the bill last year, as it had wide bi-partisan support and satisfied the public need for added transparency. However, just months after the 2012 election, Congress furtively stripped the bill of major powers:

Both chambers of Congress quickly — and near silently — approved the repeal legislation at the end of last week by unanimous consent, just before heading home to their districts.The Senate advanced the bill Thursday by unanimous consent, without debate or even briefly describing what it would do. The House signed off on the bill Friday using the same approach.

And, unfortunately, yesterday, President Obama completed this rope-a-dope deception by signing this new bill, which stripped key provisions from the STOCK Act and rolled back a lot of the progress that the original bill made in promoting transparency and open government…


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