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Government Ethics
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President-elect Biden has previously supported broad reform initiatives, like HR 1.

Reform groups renew unanswered call for support from Biden

Democracy reform advocates, still hoping for a significant statement of support from Joe Biden, have asked the president-elect to kick off the new year by pledging to prioritize their agenda.

One week after the election, 170 good-government and voting rights groups called on Biden to back their proposals. They believe that tackling corruption and strengthening democracy are of the utmost importance following the still-contentious presidential election. But Biden has yet to elevate that agenda.

While Biden cannot take any official action until Jan. 20, the 117th Congress convened Monday and can begin legislating right away So these groups are also hoping Speaker Nancy Pelosi keeps her word and once again focuses the first House bill on broad election, anti-corruption and voting rights reforms, like she did two years ago with legislation known as HR 1.

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A question for Joe Biden: If lobbying is the problem in Washington, as you claim, then why does your team include lobbyists?

Biden's ban on lobbyists in his administration would be unwise and discriminatory

Miller is board chairman of the National Institute for Lobbying & Ethics, the advocacy profession's trade association, and principal of the lobbying firm Miller/Wenhold Capitol Strategies.
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How Justice Alito is openly testing the bounds of judicial conduct

Sarat is associate provost, associate dean of the faculty and a professor of jurisprudence and political science at Amherst College. Aftergut is a former federal prosecutor in San Francisco.
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President-elect Joe Biden, who with Jill Biden marked Veterans Day on Wednesday, has come under criticism for not making democracy reform a priority.

Anxious democracy reformers pressing Biden to make more of their causes

Joe Biden has plenty of campaign promises to keep, beyond the obvious and enormous top priorities of corralling the coronavirus and stabilizing the economy. And that's made democracy reform groups, which have never counted him as an impassioned ally, newly skeptical their priorities will get addressed in his new administration.

Their anxiety has come to the surface this week. A coalition of 170 progressive good governance and voting rights organizations asked the president-elect to elevate a collection of fix-the-system proposals into his first 100 days' agenda. Separately, one of the most influential such groups, RepresentUs, lambasted the Biden transition for "an omission of epic proportions" by giving short shrift to the issues it cares about.

Their impatience, just days after Biden's victory became clear, underscores the precarious position the cause of fixing democracy's dysfunction has in the public policy agenda.

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