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house Bill H.R. 1132

Prohibiting Political Appointees From Taking Career Civil Service Jobs and “Burrowing” Into the Bureaucracy

Argument in favor

Political appointees are expected to step down when the administration which appointed them leaves office, not “burrow” into the bureaucracy by taking a career position in the federal civil service. This prevents appointees from doing that.

Pat's Opinion
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03/05/2018
Not only should there be no burrowing, there should be term limits! These people currently stay so long, they get bogged down in political favors and money so deep they become corrupt. I.e., McConnell, Ryan and others.
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Karen's Opinion
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03/05/2018
I was a governmental employee of my state for many years. This kind of nepotism rewards those who have little knowledge of what serving citizens really means. They were appointed and should get out and stay out once their appointing Administration goes. Real Civil Servants choose that career and understand sacrifice for the good of citizens.
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Christopher 's Opinion
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03/05/2018
Yes! This preserves upward mobility for career employees
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Argument opposed

Political appointees should be able to pursue whatever jobs they want when their administration’s time in office comes to an end, even if that’s a career position in the federal civil service. A two-year wait period won’t prevent that.

OlderNWiser's Opinion
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03/05/2018
Politicians becoming lobbyists are of much greater concern, cause greater harm, and have been a corrupting influence. No, thank you.
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Dale's Opinion
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03/05/2018
Wow, what a careful ‘threading of a political needle ‘ to avoid doing anything about politicians becoming lobbyists. Do something about this President that prevents hostile foreign enemies from continuing to destroy our faith in our elections.
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DEGUp's Opinion
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03/05/2018
There may be a double negative problem in the text. It makes no sense to prevent the best qualified person from working any job, political appointees or not.
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What is House Bill H.R. 1132?

This bill would prohibit political appointees from “burrowing” into the bureaucracy by being appointed to a career civil service position within two years of leaving their political position. The prohibition wouldn’t apply to a political appointee who hasn’t personally and substantially participated in any particular matter while employed in a political position. (The process of non-career, political appointees leveraging their appointment into protected, high-paying, senior-level civil service jobs is referred to as burrowing.)

Impact

Non-career political appointees who would otherwise “burrow” into a career civil service position; and federal agencies.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 1132

The CBO estimates that enacting this bill would have an insignificant cost.

More Information

In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO) introduced this bill to put a two-year prohibition on certain non-career political appointees “burrowing” into a career position in the federal civil service, ensuring that such roles remain solely merit-based:

“A political appointment is a privilege that carries with it the responsibility of serving your country. Part of serving your country means stepping down at the end of your term of service, and this bill simply enforces that expectation. Without this bill as a safeguard, political appointees can embed across our bureaucracy, carrying on the agenda of their appointing president long after voters have chosen a new direction.”

Original cosponsor Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) added:

“This bill, which would ensure a cooling off period for political appointees before accepting a position in our civil service, is a simple good-government initiative. It is part of our orderly transfer of power that when an Administration comes to an end, presidential appointees leave the executive branch with the President.”

This legislation passed the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on a voice vote and has the support of three cosponsors in the House, including two Democrats and one Republican.


Media:

Summary by Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: DNY59 / iStock)

AKA

Political Appointee Burrowing Prevention Act

Official Title

To amend title 5, United States Code, to provide for a 2-year prohibition on employment in a career civil service position for any former political appointee, and for other purposes.

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
  • The house Passed March 6th, 2018
    Passed by Voice Vote
      house Committees
      Committee on Oversight and Reform
    IntroducedFebruary 16th, 2017

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