Profile image
By Sunlight Foundation Blog (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views

Last Hour:
Last 24 Hours:

Today in OpenGov: Opacity in the transition, Capitol Cash, and rigging rumors run wild

Friday, October 28, 2016 10:11
% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

(Before It's News)

By The Sunlight Foundation

CAPITOL CASH: Using Political Party Time as a resource, Sunlight’s Drew Doggett looked at how state officials are fundraising and campaigning on the clock, including using public resources for partisan efforts. “Many states’ ethics laws contain loopholes that allow potentially imprudent acts by those in power: In some cases, officials use taxpayer-funded housing as a helping hand to bankroll their political aims; other times, they require their personal staff to canvass during work hours. Either way, these legal gray areas allow public resources to be put toward partisan efforts, calling into question whether or not state ethics laws should be modified to protect against this type of activity.” [READ MORE]

TRANSITION BY PLAYBOOK: Politico’s reporting is informing the public about the transition far more than the campaigns are. Today, Politico’s Playbook reported that “Matt Butler, chief of staff for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, will serve as deputy appointments secretary under Leah Daughtry, according to sources familiar with the Clinton transition effort. Kimberly Trueblood will be operations director and Mae Podesta (John’s daughter) will serve as deputy executive director.” Separately, Politico broke news that Vice President Joe Biden is being considered for Secretary of State and described increasing vetting activity involving lawyers. The Clinton campaign has made no public statement on any of this. Sunlight has issued principles for transparency in the transition and called for the campaigns to adopt an Ethics Pledge. CAMPAIGN 2016

  • A 13 page memorandum on the intersection of former President Bill Clinton’s personal and charitable income is continuing to draw attention on the campaign trail.  [NBC News]
  • The Clinton campaign is declining to comment on the memo or other emails published on Wikileaks, although, as NBC News and USA Today reported, Teneo has verified that the memorandum is real. [McClatchy]
  • An analysis of campaign finance data by Nick Confessore and former Sunlighter Rachel Shorey shows money flowing down the ballot as Democrats and Republicans focus on House and Senate races. [New York Times]
  • Conspiracy theories and rumors are running rife online and on talk radio, occasionally breaking through to cable TV news. Given historic lows in trust in media and government, there’s never been a more fertile environment for misinformation and disinformation. Approach verifying and amplifying reports you see on social media with care, even those with photos and videos attached: domestic and foreign sources are intentionally trying to seed doubt about the outcome of the election. [Washington Post]
  • The state and local officials who are in charge of ensuring the integrity of the election are increasingly frustrated with a public being misled about a ‘rigged election.’ [Huffington Post]


  • The report on 18F by the inspector general of the General Services Administration has now been reported beyond Beltway trade press and technology publications. When statistics, accounting and management choices are laid out like this, with no clear “win” to balance, it’s not hard to see how “Obama’s startup” could be seen as a political liability in a new administration.  [Fox News]
  • On that count, expect more soul searching about whether “bringing Silicon Valley to Washington” is really a good thing. [New York Magazine]
  • The Department of Health and Human Services issued final Freedom of Information Act regulations today. Thanks to everyone who worked to make the draft version better: you can see consideration of each comment online. Along with redline from [Federal Register]
  • The latest edition of New America Weekly is focused on “openness.” The article on transparency and democracy is particularly good. [New America]
  • The Commerce Data Advisory Council meets today in Washington. You can find agenda, meeting materials, and Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker’s prepared remarks online, along with a livestream on YouTube.
    “Our datasets are rich sources of economic, demographic, and scientific intelligence,” said Pritzker. “But big data has little value unless we make it accessible and usable for our businesses, our entrepreneurs, and our people. With your help, we have brought the public and private sectors together to develop innovative applications of our data that will benefit our economy for years to come. We have moved closer to our shared goal of making ‘open data’ a centerpiece of our dynamic economy. And we have helped ensure that our data meets its full potential. “


  • If you missed it, Naperville is taking a participatory approach to forming open data policy in the open, with the public. Today is the last day to comment. Please do! [READ MORE]
  • is opensourcing the code behind the city’s impressive website. [Route50]
  • Andrew Schrock is crowdfunding a book on civic hacking. Schrock is focusing on the work of geeks, technologists and civic hackers, as you can see in the first chapter. If that’s something you want to hear more about, you can back it. [Kickstarter]


  • Your faithful correspondent was on The Stream discussing Wikileaks, transparency and privacy yesterday. Video is embedded above. [Al Jazeera]
  • The United Kingdom has published a beta version register of local government authorities. []


Tired of your boss/friend/intern/uncle forwarding you this email every morning? You can sign up here and have it delivered direct to your inbox!

We want to find and share the most important stories about open government around the world from the past 24 hours here. To do that, we’ll need YOUR help. Please send your tips and feedback at [email protected]. If you would like to suggest an event, email us by 7 a.m. on the Monday prior to the event.

The Sunlight Foundation is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization that uses the power of the Internet to catalyze greater government openness and transparency, and provides new tools and resources for media and citizens, alike.


Report abuse


Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Top Stories
Recent Stories



Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.