Senators' tax break ideas top secret for 50 years

Super committee member Senator Max Baucus (D-MT) gestures to the media as he arrives at the meeting between Republican and Democratic members of the 'Super Committee', or Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, on November 21, 2011 on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

This final note today, in which the Senate fails to fully grasp the meaning of representative democracy.

Tax reform is in the works. Recommendations from senators to the Finance Committee as to which tax breaks they favor and which they oppose are due tomorrow.

Should you be interested in knowing, however, who prefers what: Tough beans. Chairman Max Baucus, Democrat, and ranking Republican Orrin Hatch have promised senators their recommendations will be kept secret for 50 years. Each will be given its own ID number and kept on encrypted, password-protected servers.

Now, maybe it's just me, but isn't this whole idea that they get to do non-national security, non-investigative stuff completely in secret kind of ... nuts?

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, the most widely heard program on business and the economy in the country.


I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...

Sustainability Coverage

  • The Kendeda Fund
  • Wealth & Poverty Coverage

  • The Ford Foundation