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Congress has created a bootleg market for CRS Reports

Information, Please. Watchdog Groups, Some Lawmakers Say Congressional Reports Should Be Made Public, By Elizabeth Williamson, Washington Post, February 19, 2007; A17. [Another copy here]

For years, open-government groups have fought to make the [Congressional Research Service] reports public, and for years, many lawmakers have kept them under wraps. Or so they thought.

By insisting on secrecy, Congress instead created a bootleg market for the research. Every day, a small Texas company compiles the reports and sells them to lobbyists, lawyers and others who pay thousands of dollars for a peek at the reports and what they say about the congressional agenda. And it’s all legal.

“How I get them is my trade secret . . . but I get them all,” said Walt Seager, who digs up the reports for Gallery Watch, a legislative tracking service….

Subscribers to Gallery Watch pay about $4,000 a year to get all the CRS reports, online and searchable, delivered weekly.

CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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