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Ethics Reform Bill Passes, Bi-Partisan Fears Emerge

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Here’s what the bill will do…

The outside panel, which will have six members (3 GOPers, 3 Dems), won’t have subpoena power. And it will simply forward recommendations to the actual House ethics committee for further action after investigating. That’s why some critics like CREW’s Melanie Sloan call it a “paper tiger.” Other good government types have given their support on the theory that something is better than nothing.

Needless to say, some aren’t too happy about the increased scrutiny…

Rep. Todd Tiahrt (R-KS): “If you have a single ounce of self-preservation, you’ll vote no.”

Mighty reform foe Rep. John Murtha (D-PA): “We have a New York governor in the news right who shows that you can’t legislate ethics. It always comes down to the individual.” […]

Rep. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii), a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, registered his displeasure with the proposal by using a parliamentary tactic to delay the vote.

“With this proposal we are indicting ourselves, yielding and retreating to those who would tear this House down and denigrate us as crooks and knaves and hustlers…we cringe before our critics,” he said. “If we have no respect for ourselves—how to we expect it from anybody else?”

If both Dems and Repubs are afraid of this, it’s a sure sign this is probably a VERY good bill.