Getting the Government America Deserves: How Ethics Reform Can Make a Difference

Hardcover | February 21, 2009

byRichard W Painter

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In order to be effective, federal ethics law must address sources of systematic corruption rather than simply address motives that individual government employees might have to betray the public trust, such as personal financial holdings or family relationships. Getting the Government AmericaDeserve articulates a general approach to combating systemic corruption as well as some specific proposals for doing so. Federal ethics law is relatively unknown in legal academia and elsewhere outside of Washington, D.C., but it is binding on over one million federal employees. Lobbyists, federalcontractors, lawyers and others who interact with the federal government are also deeply interested in federal ethics law and represent a surprisingly large market for a little-studied area of the law. Getting the Government America Deserve analyzes government ethics law from the perspective of an academic critic and that of a lawyer who was the chief White House ethics lawyer for two and a half years. Richard Painter argues that the existing ethics regime is in need of substantial reform sincefederal ethics laws fail to curtail conduct that undermines the integrity of government, such as political activity by federal employees and their interaction with lobbyists and interest groups. He also contends that in some other areas, such as personal financial conflicts of interest, there istoo much complexity in regulatory and reporting requirements, and rules need to be simplified. Painter's solution includes strengthening the enforcement of ethics rules, reforming the lobbying industry, and changing a system of campaign finance that impedes meaningful government ethicsreform.

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In order to be effective, federal ethics law must address sources of systematic corruption rather than simply address motives that individual government employees might have to betray the public trust, such as personal financial holdings or family relationships. Getting the Government AmericaDeserve articulates a general approach to c...

Richard Painter is the S. Walter Richey Professorship in Corporate Law at the University of Minnesota School of Law. From February 2005 to July 2007, he was Associate Counsel to the President in the White House Counsel's office, serving as the chief ethics lawyer for the President, White House employees and senior nominees to Senate-c...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:272 pages, 9.25 × 6.13 × 0.98 inPublished:February 21, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195378717

ISBN - 13:9780195378719

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