REMINDER: Support Presidential Library Transparency -SIGN ON BY COB 4/24

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Amy Bennett

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Apr 23, 2013, 1:40:26 PM4/23/13
to OpenGovtDirective (opengovernmentdirective@googlegroups.com), FEN, FOI-L (FOI-L@listserv.syr.edu), Matt Rumsey

Hi everyone,

 

Just a reminder that you have until COB tomorrow (Wednesday, April 24) to add your organization to the below letter in support of Presidential Library transparency. Current signatories are below. Please use this form to add your org:  https://docs.google.com/a/sunlightfoundation.com/forms/d/1YVb-ShA1piOYZXgtke73k3cGsCw-PZSmNiuzNXVIS3o/viewform

 

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Speaker Boehner and Majority Leader Pelosi,

 

We the undersigned are writing to express our support for the Presidential Library Donation Reform Act, introduced in the 113th Congress as H.R. 1133. The legislation is the latest of a series of bipartisan efforts to bring a welcome measure of transparency to fundraising around presidential libraries.

 

For far too long, a cloud has hung over library fundraising efforts. Oftentimes, it appeared that donors supported presidential libraries because of the connection it built with a president whose imminent departure put him in a position to dole out favors, an inference only strengthened by the lack of disclosure around contributions. Improved transparency would help reduce the appearance of impropriety by bringing these transactions into the daylight and deterring inappropriate behavior.

 

The legislation requires fundraising organizations to submit quarterly reports on entities that have contributed over a certain threshold towards a presidential library. The reports shall be made available online by the National Archives as soon as they are received in a searchable, sortable, downloadable database.

 

While greater transparency on donations to presidential libraries does not resolve all outstanding campaign finance disclosure issues, it is a measured response to a discrete problem and is worthy of support.

 

The Presidential Library Donation Reform Act was recently reportedly favorably by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. We hope that Congress speedily considers and enacts this legislation.


Sincerely,

 

American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression

American Library Association

Center for Media and Democracy

Center for Responsive Politics

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington

eCitizens.org

iSolon.org

Northern California Association of Law Libraries

OpenTheGovernment.org

Progressive Librarians Guild

Project On Government Oversight (POGO)

Society of American Archivists

Sunlight Foundation

Tully Center for Free Speech

Washington Coalition for Open Government

 

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