Government Reform

I focus extensively on government reform issues. My "Fixing Congress" speech in 2011 helped to launch a series of reform measures to cut government waste and eliminate, increase transparency and make the government work better for its citizens.

One of my proposed reforms, “No Budget, No Pay” became law of the land in 2013. It was only temporary but it worked. We need to make it permanent.

One of my efforts to eliminate wasteful and duplicative programs was approved by the 113th Congress as a rules measure.  I’ve also introduced bipartisan legislation requiring federal agencies to produce an annual list of their programs and submit it to the Office of Management and Budget so we can identify additional duplicative efforts.

We need more accountability and transparency in our nation’s finances. The Consolidated Financial Report of the United States Government is the most important government financial document because it shows a real picture of our nation’s finances, but most folks don’t even know it exists. It is the only government document that includes liabilities like Medicare and Social Security that are on the country's "credit card" for future payment, and it’s published every year by the Treasury. In 2006, I wrote a foreword to the Financial Report, which was published, along with the full report text, and available in bookstores across America. A subcommittee of OGR held a hearing on the 2011 report, and you can watch video of my comments here.

As one of the first members to reject earmarks, I am glad that we again have a ban on earmarks this Congress. But we need a permanent fix, and that's why I'm working on legislation to completely end the practice.

I also continue to support redistricting reform and was proud once again to introduce the Redistricting Transparency Act, which would curb the practice of gerrymandering by letting the public participate in the Congressional redistricting process.


Links & Additional Information

House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

U.S. Government Accountability Office

Recovery.Gov

Financial Report of the United States Government
 


 

More on Government Reform

Apr 21, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) and Rep. Steve Cohen (TN-09) joined 150+ of their colleagues in asking SBA Administrator Isabella Guzman that the Shuttered Venues Operators Grants portal be fixed as soon as possible. The portal opened April 8 and was only live for a few hours before closing for technical issues.  

 

Apr 20, 2021 Press Release

Yesterday the U.S. Government Accountability Office published a report regarding sexual harassment within the Nuclear Security Forces of the NNSA. As Chairman of the Strategic Forces Subcommittee, Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) commissioned the report in 2019 after the alleged assault and subsequent harassment and termination of Ms. Jennifer Glover, a former security contractor.

Apr 13, 2021 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Today Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) issued the following statement on the recent acts of gun violence in Tennessee:

Apr 8, 2021 Press Release

NASHVILLE – Today Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) commended President Joe Biden’s executive actions to end gun violence by saying: “President Biden’s actions today will undoubtedly save lives, especially here in Middle Tennessee where our governor just signed a bill to allow the carrying of firearms without a permit,” Rep. Cooper said. “The House passed expanded background check bills last month that we still need the Senate to bring up for a vote.”

Mar 23, 2021 Press Release

NASHVILLE – Today Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) and Rep. Roger Williams (TX-25) reintroduced the bipartisan bill, the Eliminate the Digital Divide Act. The bill addresses the digital divide by giving more internet access to more people who have been left behind at a time when they most need reliable broadband. 
 
The legislation requires the Federal Communications Commission to set up a new State Broadband program, which will provide funds to expand internet access to unserved areas. This includes more than 600,000 Tennesseans. 
 

Mar 12, 2021 Press Release

NASHVILLE – Today Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) was appointed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) is one of the most exclusive and important committees in Congress. The Committee is charged with the oversight of intelligence activities and programs of the United States Intelligence Community.

Jan 21, 2021 Page

Knowledge is power, and it’s never been more important to stay informed. Sign-up for IssueWatch, a twice-weekly online newsletter dedicated to Middle Tennesseans interested in following important congressional news and other major happenings in Washington.

Sent Tuesdays and Fridays, the IssueWatch newsletter focuses on easily readable and shareable summary of news on health care, national security, budgetary policy, the environment and other issues of interest to Middle Tennesseans. Find the most recent newsletters below:

Jan 3, 2021 Press Release

NASHVILLE – Today Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) was sworn-in to serve in the 117th United States Congress.

Shortly after being sworn-in, Cooper re-introduced the following three bills to ensure the voting process is fair and equitable for all Americans.

Dec 9, 2020 Press Release

NASHVILLE – Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) along with Rep. Tim Walberg (MI-7) announced their bipartisan Taxpayers-Right-to-Know Act is part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) conference agreement that will be heading to the President for his approval.

Oct 2, 2020 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Last night the U.S. House of Representatives passed an updated version of the HEROES Act to support Americans and the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic The $2.2 trillion legislation passed the House by 214-207. Not a single Republican voted for the relief package.