President Barack Obama’s executive order, that establishes a measure from the failed Dislose Act bill which forces federal contractors, except unions, to expose their political contributions when making a bid for a government contract, was challenged by House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, Maryland Democrat.
At Rep. Hoyer’s weekly pen and pad session on Tuesday, when I asked about President Obama’s executive order, the Maryland Democrat said he was “not in agreement with the administration on this.”
“I think the issue on contracting ought to be on the merits of the contractor’s application and bid and capabilities,” he said. “I think there are some serious questions as to what implications there are if somehow we consider political contributions in the context of awarding contracts.”
Republicans went after the drafy executive order, saying it would open companies up to political intimidation. Congressman Darrell Issa, California Republican, is already going after the White House on the president’s executive order. The Daily Caller reports:
Top GOP oversight official Rep. Darrell Issa said in a May 9 letter that if a top Obama aide again declines to testify on a draft executive order requiring political disclosure from government contractors, Issa will be “required to consider the use of compulsory process” – a congressional subpoena.
If Issa subpoenas OMB director Jacob Lew to testify about the draft order, which Republicans warn could allow the administration to politicize the government contracting process, it would be the first time the GOP has subpoenaed the Obama White House since they obtained the authority in taking over the House in January.
“I’m not necessarily for their proposal. I think mixing applications or bids for contracts with disclosure of political contributions…if you have somebody contributing to Democrats and bidding on contracts with a Republican president and they don’t get the contract, they think somehow that was political and vice versa,” said Mr. Hoyer.
When I asked Congressman Hoyer if the unions should be exempt, he explained: “I’m not too sure that anybody ought to be included in making a coupling disclosure on contributions, which by the way aren’t disclosed on a bid submission. From your standpoint I think all people should be exempt. It’s not a requirement now. I don’t think it ought to be a requirement. So I’m not in agreement with the administration on this.”