The Washington Times - January 28, 2009, 02:03PM

New Mexico lawmakers have delayed a decision on allowing webcasts of committee meetings in part because webcasts might show some lawmakers dozing off, the New Mexico Independent is reporting.

The House Rules Committee created a subpanel to study the proposal, which has wide support among the committee. One representative said webcasts could encroach on lawmakers’ privacy and capture embarrassing moments.


“If I am sleeping and I am being recorded, that can be used as political gain,” said state Rep. Ray Begaye.

Uh, you have a point there, sir.  We wouldn’t want you to be filmed while sleeping on the job.  Then again, we probably wouldn’t want you sleeping on the job in the first place, but that’s for the voters to decide.

German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck once said: “Laws are like sausages. It’s better not to see them being made.”  The difference is if you fall asleep making sausages, you might lose a finger.

You know, streaming video of a legislative committee meeting would be enough to put a LOT of people to sleep.

I wonder if YouTube would be interested in creating a special section for embarrassing legislative moments, where every belch, nose pick and nap is recorded and replayed for posterity.  Now that’s entertainment.

In some places around the country, most lawmakers don’t show up for committee meetings.  So putting a webcam in those meetings would be like putting a bell on a cat, but in reverse.  The bell lets know where the cat is, the webcam lets you know where the lawmaker isn’t.