Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Capps and Schakowsky, Come Back Already!!

Last session of Congress, two Representatives on the House Energy and Commerce Committee (parent committee of the House Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet) were cosponsors of the previous version of HR 3101. These Representatives, Representative Lois Capps (D-CA) and Representative Janice Schakowsky (D-IL) have not come back as cosponsors yet and it has been more than eight months since HR 3101 was introduced by Representative Ed Markey.

Lois Capps

Janice Schakowsky

Caption Action 2 called both Schakowsky's and Capps' offices. At Schakowsky's, the response was "I don't see why there would be a problem with her signing on again." But at Capps' office...well, read on.

Relay: this is congress women louis capps office qq ga
Caption Action 2: hello this is jamie berke is danielle letendre there qga
Relay: ummmm... you know she is actually away from her desk at the moment would you like to lv a vm..qq ga
Caption Action 2: no let me explain why i am calling. im callign because in the previous session of congress lois cosponsored a bill. the bill is back again but she has not come back as a cosponsor yet and it has been more than eight months. ga
Relay: umm okay well I can certainly pass along a msg of support about a certain bill umm if you want to hear back from the congress women on that certain thing I can get your
contact info an we can get back to you if you want me to pass long your thoughts I can do that as well ga
Caption Action 2: is there anyone i can talk to? i would like to find out why she has not returned as a cosponsor yet ga
Relay: umm in order to better help you id at least need to know the name of the bill we can go from there ga
Caption Action 2: the bill number is HR 3101. in the previous session of congress it was known as HR 6320. ga
Relay: okay 3101 ummm sorry hang on a sec........ (typing) umm she is not on the subcommittee shes umm she does support the bill she is not on the subcommittee but when it comes to the full committee she is supportive in general which is a committee she is on she's supportive but she is supportive of it an I can certainly pass long thoughts about becoming a co sponsor ga
Caption Action 2: please do becauase i don't understand it. she was a cosponsor in the previous session of congress. why hasn't she come back as a cosponsor this time? i would like to talk to someone. ga
Relay: okay um im going to put you on hold for a second if that's okay ga
Caption Action 2: sure ga
Relay: I dont have the im not the person who handles this issue an I can pass long thoughtrs an can an will do that if she wants to hear back in a written way I can get contact info if you wanna do that.. but if I feel like were going in circles here.. ga
Caption Action 2: yes we are going in circles. you're front office staff. i want to talk to a legislative aide or director about this. she should have returned as a cosponsor by now! ga
Relay: okay an where are you calling from qq an your name pls q ga
Caption Action 2: im calling from dc and my name is jamie berke. i have been in contact with your office before. is there anyone there i can talk to for a few minutes i want to find out why she
has not returned as a cosponsor. she is not a member of the subcommittee though she is a member of the bigger committee. ga
Relay: the staffer who handles this issue is not available at the moment she is in a meeting.. what I can do I s pass long this msg an will do that.. ummm however I just want
to stress the lack of co sponsorship does not mean lack of support.. so she supports this measure she supported it in the past an continues to do so.. I can put you through to the staff member who handles this her vm if you like but
Caption Action 2: what is the name of this staff member? i will email her directly ga
Relay: Danielle Lependre gaa
Caption Action 2: thank you i have her email address already. what is your name by the way qga
Relay: my name is brenna ga
Caption Action 2: thank you bye now ga or sk

Okay, what is going on here?? It doesn't make any sense. Before, both Schakowsky and Capps were cosponsors of the bill - you can see that by clicking this GovTrack link! Why would Capps' office say that Capps is "supportive" yet Capps has not signed back on to the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act?? Clearly *something* political is going on! Caption Action 2 has no idea what is going on. All we can do is theorize.

One theory: that there is increased opposition to the bill and pressure on Schakowsky and Capps not to cosponsor again, especially since they are members of the parent committee, the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Another theory is that maybe they *want* to cosponsor again, but can't because the chair of the Committee, Henry Waxman, is in the way. Or maybe Rick Boucher is pressuring them not to cosponsor? We don't know anything, all we can do is invent theories.

Will Schakowsky and/or Capps ever come back? We need the public support, in the form of cosponsorship, of *someone* on that Committee or Subcommittee!

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