Sponsoring Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) introduced an earlier version of this bill to the house in the previous session of Congress. It did not see a vote.
Reaching a definition of "porn" could be difficult when implementing this bill. The Supreme Court couldn’t do so in 1963’s Jacobellis v. Ohio, in which Justice Potter Stewart wrote “I’ know it when I see it.” That said, U.S. Code does contain a working definition for “sexually explicit conduct” in U.S. 2256, a law concerning child pornography.
Rep. Meadows introduced this legislation largely in response to a well-publicized instance in which an EPA investigators found that one of the agency’s employees watched porn for two to six hours a day. Four months after the investigation went public, that employee was still drawing a salary from the agency. Though Rep. Meadows expressed outrage at this in his release, the bill does not include any language on termination of employees that view pornography.
In the summer of 2014, The Washington Times found that this behavior was hardly isolated—employees of the Commerce Department, the General Services Administration, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development also made a habit of watching porn at work.
Sponsoring Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) Press Release
(Photo Credit: Flickr user USDAgov)