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

Issa: Transparency Measure Dead in Senate

In a fast and furious series of appearances on the Sunday talk shows, House Government Oversight and Reform panel chief Darrell Issa, R-Calif., spent most of his airtime addressing the ongoing dispute about holding Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt.

And most of the resulting news coverage focused duly on the politics surrounding whether the Obama administration’s claim of executive privilege should be interpreted as a sign of a cover-up of key documents Issa has demanded to shed light on the botched gun-walking operation put on in 2009 and since discontinued by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

But in a quick aside to NBC’s Meet the Press host David Gregory, Issa broached a topical federal management issue in the course of arguing that House Republicans would rather be discussing subjects other than mistakes made by law enforcement officials seeking to combat Mexican drug cartels.

“We want to be jobs and the economy,” Issa said. “The Data Act passed unanimously out of the House, and it's died in the Senate. That would bring greater transparency and accountability and save money. We have those issues we're working on.”

That bill, which would require agencies to use uniform online reporting on grants, loans and contracts, is sponsored in the Senate by Mark Warner, D-Va. It lies pending in the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Charlie Clark joined Government Executive in the fall of 2009. He has been on staff at The Washington Post, Congressional Quarterly, National Journal, Time-Life Books, Tax Analysts, the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, and the National Center on Education and the Economy. He has written or edited online news, daily news stories, long features, wire copy, magazines, books and organizational media strategies.

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