WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Susan Collins has learned that the Obama Administration may soon issue an Executive Order requiring federal agencies to collect information about the campaign contributions of potential contractors before awarding any federal contract. In the name of keeping politics out of the contracting process, the proposed White House policy draft would apparently make information about political contributions a part of every federal contract offer.
Senator Collins made the following statement.
"While the goals of increased transparency and accountability are ones that I share, I am concerned that this ill-conceived policy draft could have a chilling effect on the First Amendment rights of individuals to contribute to candidates of their choice. It troubles me that the draft executive order could be perceived as making political contributions a factor to be considered in awarding federal contracts. Moreover, it appears to be an attempt by the Administration to circumvent Congress by implementing provisions of the so-called DISCLOSE Act, despite the Senate’s rejection of that legislation in its current form.
"Since this is reported to be a draft, I am hopeful cooler heads will prevail and this proposal will not see the light of day."