Sen. Tom Carper, on Sept. 26, pushed to pass an amendment that would hold future presidential candidates — regardless of political affiliation — to higher ethical standards before and after they are elected to our nation’s highest office.
During a business meeting in the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Carper offered his bill, the Transition Team Ethics Improvement Act, as an amendment to a bill introduced by Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wisconsin, Carper’s common sense bill would require presidential candidates to provide additional transparency during the presidential transition process by disclosing conflicts of interest before an election and developing ethics plans for their transition teams. In addition, Carper’s legislation would improve congressional oversight for transition team members who are given non-public access to federal agencies or those granted security clearances.
This legislation builds on the successful, bipartisan work Carper spearheaded when he passed landmark legislation that helps to ensure a smooth transition into the executive office. The Edward “Ted” Kaufman and Michael Leavitt Presidential Transitions Improvements Act, which was signed into law in 2016, ensures that presidential candidates can navigate the transition process and manage a smooth transition into the executive office.
Carper called on his colleagues to support the Transition Team Ethics Improvement Act, which is supported by bipartisan ethics experts from both the Barack Obama and George W. Bush administrations and former Sen. Ted Kaufman. The Republican majority on the committee voted down Carper’s legislation.