Tag Archives: Congress

New: Use GovTrack to Call Congress

“Petitioning our government is not only a right but a responsibility. Now on GovTrack we’ll walk you through how to call Congress about bills you have an opinion on. Look for the new “Call Congress!” buttons on all bill pages on GovTrack. When you click Call Congress, we’ll ask if you support or oppose the bill, and then we’ll give you a script you can read from — if you want — when calling Congress so that your call is effective. And, to make the call really easy, we’ll call you.  You enter your phone number, we call you, and then automatically your call is patched into the office of your representative. Right now we’re only able to have you call your representative in the House, but we’ll add the ability to call senators soon.” (via GovTrack.us Blog)

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Library Copyright Alliance Submits Statement to House Committee Regarding Copyright and Innovation

“Yesterday, the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) submitted a statement on the role of copyright in innovation (PDF) to the US House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary. The committee has been conducting a series of hearings on copyright issues as a way to educate members and prepare for reform. Today, the committee is holding a hearing on innovation and copyright. Next week there will be a hearing on technology and copyright.” (via ARL)

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Census Bureau’s New Tool Puts Congressional District Statistics at Your Fingertips

“The U.S. Census Bureau has released My Congressional District, the first interactive tool geared exclusively toward finding basic demographic and economic statistics for every congressional district in the U.S. This Web app uses the latest annual statistics from the American Community Survey, providing the most detailed portrait of America’s towns and neighborhoods. Users can sort through statistics in five key categories upon selection of a specific district in the application. Summary level statistics covering education, finance, jobs and housing, as well as basic demographic information, can quickly be displayed, downloaded and shared with others. A major feature of the My Congressional District app is the ability to embed a selected 113th congressional district on a user’s own webpage. The embedded district will display the latest statistics from the American Community Survey, allowing visitors to quickly view statistics for any of the 435 congressional districts and the District of Columbia.” (via U.S. Census Bureau)

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LCA Submits Statement to House Committee Regarding Unlocking Consumer Choice Wireless Competition Act

Read the statement here

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Law Library of Congress is collecting treasures for you

“Like many attorneys, Mark Wojcik used to view law libraries as a means to an end. But thanks to an innovative outreach campaign conducted by the Law Library of Congress, Wojcik now relishes the tweets, blog posts and emails that reveal the riches of the world’s largest legal collection. “It’s like the law library is coming to me,” says Wojcik, a professor at John Marshall Law School in Chicago. “They want to show me their treasures or share with me a secret about how I can use their collections more effectively.”

via ABA Journal

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EPIC Thanks Congress for FOIA Oversight, Calls for Renewed Attention to Transparency

“EPIC, along with more than 40 transparency organizations, thanked the House Committee on Oversight for sending a letter to the Department of Justice about the importance of the Freedom of Information Act. The open government organizations said “outdated FOIA regulations, excessive fee assessments, growing FOIA backlogs, and the misuse of exemptions are issues that continually frustrate FOIA requesters” and expressed hope that the Committee would share the Department of Justice’s responses with the public.”

via EPIC

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House Begins Publishing Committee Data

“The House of Representatives’ document portal, docs.house.gov, launched in January 2012 with a surprisingly rich and relevant set of data: all bills and amendments (including drafts) that would come to the floor over the next week, and extensive XML metadata about each document and when it was updated. It’s pretty difficult to overstate the value of this data. After all, information on what the House is about to do is vital — to participate effectively in our democracy, you need to have some lead time. The House has doubled down on its pledge to keep innovating, and has begun to release what promises to be an expansive set of committee information. Docs.house.gov’s expansion in breadth from floor proceedings to include committee activities provides significant new opportunities for the public to understand how the House functions as well as a much earlier entry point for citizens to become substantively involved in the legislative process.”

via Sunlight Foundation Blog

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Congressional Record App Updated to Include iPhone

“The Congressional Record app now works across all iOS devices (iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad).  The iPad app has been downloaded over 12,000 times.  I’m guessing with this update, that number will go up.”

via LOC

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Congress’ Best (And Worst) Committee Web Sites

National Journal – “Barack Obama punched his ticket to the White House with the help of innovative digital campaigning, and since arriving he’s overhauled and created high-profile Web sites like WhiteHouse.gov and Recovery.gov. Yet amidst this push for transparency, some Congressional committee Web sites — crucial for disseminating hearing schedules, transcripts and legislation — haven’t caught up.”

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US Senate Votes Now Available in XML – Bring on The Mashups!

ReadWriteWeb – “Today is an important day in the history of politics and technology – the US Senate voting record is finally available in machine-readable XML (extensible markup language) format. Mashups, vote tracking and comparison applications will now be welcomed in the front door of Congress as first class technologies.”

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