Posted by: Will Rhodes
Cameron and Brown will now, very quickly move in one direction or another – those directions will be to distance themselves from Obama or they will do something that seemed quite impossible just a matter of a day ago – and that is look at giving the UK a more open and accountable government.
President Obama said during the campaign that he would do this, and he has – in a matter of hours in office he signed executive orders:
on government ethics and transparency as part of a packed first full day in office.
The measures include curbs on lobbying and a pay freeze for senior White House staff. Federal employees will have to sign up to new ethics procedures.
The new president said he was beginning “a new era of openness” in government.
Not only that, which isn’t in the BBC story:
As he outlined Wednesday, he is expanding the release of documents under the Freedom of Information Act, which, among other things, allows journalists and everyone else to uncover what our leaders are really doing.
He pledges to force himself, as well as previous presidents who may want to keep certain information confidential, to first make a case for why the information can’t be public to the attorney general and the White House counsel.
That means this man – the one that Brown and Cameron wish to emulate; has opened up both government to transparency as well as the executive branch – will they do the same?
Personally I can’t see it – what I can see is excuses as to why they can’t do it – it will be along the lines that the parliamentary system isn’t the same.
But that, surely, smacks of hypocrisy?
We will see – but I don’t hold any hope on that one. What say you jack Straw?