MA Legislature’s ‘Come to Jesus’ moment on transparency
There is no transparency, and the Boston City Council, along with Moulton have just noticed.
Oh my. Is the summer heat getting to me? Am I coming down with COVID? How could I be on the same side as Congressman Seth Moulton and the Boston City Council?
No, I have not gone over to the dark side. This is a case of even a broken clock is right twice per day.
What possibly could the issue be? Answer: transparency at the State House. There is no transparency, and the Boston City Council, along with Moulton have just noticed.
My question to the newly awakened Democrats is: Where have you been for the past two decades? You are very late to the table. Republicans have been urging transparency for a quarter of a century.
Where were Moulton and the City Council when GOP Reps. Marc Lombardo, Jim Lyons, Shaunna O’Connell and Geoff Diehl took all the slings and arrows for shutting down informal sessions because they could not get access to “the can” to find out which bills were being teed up to be passed with little or no debate or public input?
These Republican House members were true profiles in courage, yet they were accused of somehow risking lives due to their legislative blockade for transparency.
Where were Moulton and the City Council when it was exposed that someone snuck into the budget the “blue ribbon” commission on legislative pay raises? They were MIA when the loophole giving drivers’ licenses to illegal immigrants was slid secretively into the budget.
I heard no outcry when the legislature failed to hold a public hearing on the tax bill that created the tech tax and linked the gasoline tax to inflation.
I guess they missed all the reports from the Sunlight Foundation giving Bacon Hill a failing “F” grade in transparency.
For the transparency newcomers, let me educate you on the battle. Every session the GOP has filed amendment after amendment to the House and Senate rules to require bills to be in print for 24 hours before coming to the floor.
Other reforms would have made committee votes public record, and would have stopped the bundling of amendments (making them easier to hide). They have even fought to require a full audit of the legislature’s finances.
Never once did they receive support from Democrats.
Oops, I am wrong on one count. Suzanne Bump, when she was first running for State Auditor, supported a full and open audit of the legislature. Of course, after she got elected that campaign promise disappeared.
Maybe the Boston City Council could pass another resolution praising the GOP for their relentlessness in the fight for transparency! Yeah right!