Tax Analysts®Tax Analysts®

My Subscriptions:

Press Releases

December 3, 2001
Democrats Claim Bush Social Security Panel's Secret Meetings Violate The Law
Should the folks who are revamping the social security system do so in public or behind closed doors? In public, say some of the Democrat legislators who eventually will write the changes to the social security laws. But they claim that the special panel President Bush set up to recommend changes to social security has been doing the public's work in private. And these Democrat members of Congress have introduced legislation to bring a little sunshine into the process. Critics of the social security reform panel are concerned that President Bush appointed people to the panel who would rubber stamp his $1 trillion privatization plan.

Tax Notes reporter Warren Rojas writes that Democrats Bob Matsui (Calif.), Henry Waxman (Calif.), Lloyd Doggett (Texas), Earl Pomeroy (N.Dak), and Xavier Becerra (Calif.) have introduced legislation to block the president's bipartisan social security panel from holding closed door discussions. Current law, say these legislators, requires government advisory committees to hold public hearings and meetings. However, they claim that the social security reform panel has not followed the law. Instead, the panel's cochairs have permitted the 16-member panel to split into smaller groups to gather information.

The cochairs of the social security panel explain that the subgroups did not violate federal laws and regulations governing public meetings because the subgroups did not make any decisions.

Matsui counters that "as you talk and deliberate and move toward a conclusion, that is part of the decisionmaking process."

Click here for the full text of Rojas' article. You may quote from all of these articles, or reprint them, but please notify us if you do so and please credit our writers.

About Tax Analysts

Tax Analysts is an influential provider of tax news and analysis for the global community. Over 150,000 tax professionals in law and accounting firms, corporations, and government agencies rely on Tax Analysts' federal, state, and international content daily. Key products include Tax Notes, Tax Notes Today, State Tax Notes, State Tax Today, Tax Notes International, and Worldwide Tax Daily. Founded in 1970 as a nonprofit organization, Tax Analysts has the industry's largest tax-dedicated correspondent staff, with more than 250 domestic and international correspondents. For more information, visit our home page.

Media Release 2001-12

Contact communications@tax.org

###