Fedblog FedblogFedblog
Government Executive Editor in Chief Tom Shoop, along with other editors and staff correspondents, look at the federal bureaucracy from the outside in.

House Overseers May Subpoena OMB Chief


Reps. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and Sam Graves, R-Mo., really want a high-ranking Obama administration official to testify about the draft executive order circulating around the administration that would require federal contractors to disclose to government procurement officials political contributions dating back two years prior to bidding on a new project.

In fact, the lawmakers are threatening to bust out their subpoena power if Office of Management and Budget Director Jacob Lew or Deputy Director for Management Jeffrey Zients refuse to appear before a joint session Thursday of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which Issa chairs, and the small business panel, headed by Graves, Politico reports.

So far, that's exactly what the OMB folks have done. In a letter to the legislators, Lew wrote, "Unfortunately, because this hearing concerns a draft presidential executive order that is still moving through the standard review and feedback process, we will be unable to testify."

Issa and Graves fired back with a letter of their own, saying that if the OMB folks persisted, the legislators would be "required to consider the use of compulsory process."

The draft order, which an administration official has said is necessary because "taxpayers deserve to feel confident that federal contracting decisions are based on merit alone and are not influenced by political favoritism," has drawn criticism both from Republicans on Capitol Hill and industry groups. They argue that the order would actually inject politics into the acquisition process.

Update, 4:55 p.m.: House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said Tuesday he does not support the administration's proposal, Hotline On Call reports.

Tom Shoop is vice president and editor in chief at Government Executive Media Group, where he oversees both print and online editorial operations. He started as associate editor of Government Executive magazine in 1989; launched the company’s flagship website, GovExec.com, in 1996; and was named editor in chief in 2007.

Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.