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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Nancy Pelosi and Vern Buchanan agree: Open up debt committee meetings



Nancy Pelosi tonight issued a statement in response to the S&P downgrading of long-term U.S. debt, and turned it into a call for transparency with the upcoming meetings of the super committee on debt.

As S&P stated, 'The transparency and accountability of institutions bear directly on sovereign creditworthiness because they reinforce the stability and predictability both of political institutions and the political framework,' " Pelosi said. "The American people are watching to see if the bipartisan Joint Committee will develop a plan to responsibly reduce the deficit in a balanced way while promoting economic growth and creating jobs.The work of this Committee will affect all Americans, and its deliberations should be open the press, to the public and webcast."

Sounds familiar. Florida Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Sarasota, earlier this week introduced a bill to force open the meetings. “Too much is at stake to allow this 12-member committee to make critical decisions about the country’s future behind closed doors,” said Buchanan. “We need to make sure this new committee meets in public as they discuss how to cut $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years.  The public and the press have a right to see this process unfold.”

The committee has not yet been formed and leaders have not said whether meeting will be open. But here's to the bipartisan efforts of Pelosi and Buchanan.

[Last modified: Friday, August 5, 2011 11:34pm]


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