Back in January, we noted the somewhat ironic fact that a US Senator had put a "secret hold" on a bill to protect government whistleblowers. We wondered if someone would blow the whistle
and out that Senator. Thankfully, the folks from On the Media stepped up
, and set up a project to find out who put that secret hold on the bill. Last we had checked in, they had narrowed it down to three possible
Senators: Jon Kyl, Jeff Sessions and James Risch. Since then, Risch said he didn't put the hold on, leaving just Kyl and Sessions refusing to speak. Now that it's been narrowed down to just two, On the Media
has decided to end the project
, but is happy about the results. The campaign served to raise two key issues:
The Government Accountability Project has let us know that this project has had the two-pronged effect in the Senate of making Senators more hesitant to use the secret hold, and bringing new attention to the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, which is expected to be reintroduced in the Senate shortly.
This is good news. While there actually are some serious problems with the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act as it was written last time around, that's still no excuse for anyone to put a "secret" hold on it. If Senators are going to block a bill, they should be willing to at least come out and admit that it was them, let alone explain their reasons for doing so.