Politician All For Transparency Until It Might Make Him Look Bad In A Campaign Commercial

from the hello-streisand dept

Apparently, California broadcasts many key state legislature hearings, just like many legislative bodies these days. However, right before a hearing on some key ballot initiatives, apparently California Senate President pro tem Darrell Steinberg ordered that the feed be turned off for the meeting. Critics noted that Steinberg was vigorously supporting one of the ballot measures, which involves sales and income tax issues. After complaining about cutting off the feed, Steinberg and his staff basically admitted that they did it because they don’t want footage to be used against them in campaign commercials by opponents:

Steinberg spokesman, Rhys Williams justified the disruption of CalChannel service this way: ‘It was inappropriate to provide legislative resources to promote the ballot measure campaigns of either side, and in particular to make those public-funded resources easily available for exploitation in political TV commercials.'”

In other words, because the public debate on these issues might lead others to make campaign commercials, it should not be transparent or shared at all.

The committee’s own chairperson, Lois Wolk, was apparently horrified that the video was cut off, noting that “she had begun the hearing with a statement expressing hope that it would help voters reach a reasoned decision on the four measures.” Oops.

Steinberg, to his credit has now apologized and admitted that: “It wasn’t a good reason… When you mess up, you mess up. I’m sorry and it won’t happen again.” At least he recognizes that, but the initial move was still pretty blatant and raises significant questions about his motivations in cutting off this most basic form of governmental transparency.

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Comments on “Politician All For Transparency Until It Might Make Him Look Bad In A Campaign Commercial”

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ChurchHatesTucker (profile) says:

Back in the day

When CSPAN first started, they were restricted to very tight shots, because Congress didn’t want people to know how often they didn’t show up. Newt Gingrich and co. siezed on that and started making speeches during Special Orders and acting like that they were directly addressing congressmen who weren’t even there. Tip O’Niel flipped out and made CSPAN pull back and show how empty it was.

TL;DR Be careful about putting Pols in charge of broadcasting Pols.

Robert Freetard says:

>In other words, because the public debate on these issues >might lead others to make campaign commercials, it should >not be transparent or shared at all.

No the Other Words that apply here are ACTUALLY
Because his support of these issues, if VOTERS KNEW ABOUT IT may well change their decision to vote for him, he would rather keep it as quiet as possible.

eca (profile) says:


you dont want someone video taping your DOINGS.?.?
Are you?
Ashamed? smoking habit, you said you quit?
Embarrassed? First time on a nude beach?
Doing something Against the rules? You are supposed to represent a GROUP, and now you ARENT??
Doing something against the LAW?? Striping in public? speeding?

I thought we were supposed to place ideological persons that LIVED by what they said..
I thought we were supposed to elect SMART people that Looked ahead and made decisions they could live with..

THIS is a public OFFICE. This is a public JOB.. this is SUPPOSED to be where we can EXPECT those that we elected to “DO THE RIGHT THING””protect the public”

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