by Dan Gibson
The WNYC program On the Media wanted to find out which senator anonymously blocked the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, a popular bipartisan act which protects public workers who expose corruption, waste, etc., so they crowdsourced a project to contact each senator and get a straight answer about whether they were the one.
So, it's down to three, and the outgoing Jon Kyl could be the guy. If you'd like to help find out if Kyl was the culprit, On the Media provides a guide to the questions to ask:
1) Did you place the anonymous hold on the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act?
2) What is the Senator's policy regarding inquiries from constituents about his use of the anonymous hold?
3) When is the Senator’s “hold” the public’s business, about which the public has the right to know?
4) What determines when use of the “hold” is a “personal, private matter” that is not the public’s business?
5) Why would the Senator be publicly supportive of the bill but work to defeat it in private?
6) All but three Senators have confirmed that they did NOT use the hold to kill S. 372, the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act. Assuming that the senator who placed the hold is eventually identified - as they frequently are - and it is your senator, is he prepared to deal with the fallout that comes from ignoring constituent questions?
Jon Kyl (AZ)
730 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510
Number of times contacted: 18
Notes: 3-2-2011 — Have yet to make contact with Senator Kyl’s Press Secretary Ryan Patmintra. Several messages have been left with the office. A caller spoke to a staffer named Nat on 1-18-2011 who didn’t think Sen. Kyl was responsible, but could not confirm. Since 2-17-2011, three constituents have received the following letter in reply to inquiries about his role in killing the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act: “Thank you for contacting me about the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (S.372) . The Senate passed S. 372 on Dec 14, 2010 and the House passed a different version of the legislation on Dec 22. With only hours left in the session, the Senate did not have sufficient time to review the House’s changes and reconcile the differences between the two bills. “