Open House: Updated Clerk Website Offers Better Access to Real-Time Info
The updates include an improved user-interface featuring three tabs: Floor Proceedings (a text-based play-by-play of legislative activity), Bills (each piece of legislation to be considered that day), and Votes (including direct links to the official roll call). There are also links for downloading an XML version of the data and watching current (or archived) video of the House floor via HouseLive.gov.
These kinds of institutional changes reflect an ongoing commitment by the House majority to make Congress more open and accountable -- a major pillar of the Pledge to America.
“Republicans gained notice in 2010,” National Review notes, “for promoting two much-clicked tech products: YouCut, an online program soliciting user input on spending cuts, and America Speaking Out, an interactive policy forum.” This year, a “read the bill” requirement – whereby legislation is posted online at least three days before a vote – was added to House rules. The Speaker endorsed expanding media access inside Congress. Major addresses like Speaker Boehner’s jobs speech on “Liberating America’s Economy” are being streamed live online. The House is developing new electronic data standards for the purpose of posting legislative data online in machine-readable formats like XML (see here and here). And more. Stay tuned as the new majority continues to innovate and take advantage of digital platforms that help lawmakers better connect with and listen to the American people.