Technology has had a lot to do with the longest economic expansion in our nation’s history, currently in its ninth consecutive year.
One of the few surveys of congressional voting behavior on technology issues has been done by the Information Technology Industry Council. The council is a consortium of large publicly-traded corporations in the technology sector. Their survey ranks each congressman on seven key votes important to the hi-tech industry. These include issues such as Y2K readiness, trade relations with China, amending U.S. patent laws, and legalization of digital signatures that will make e-commerce transactions more secure.
Fourteen elected members who have voluntarily agreed to limit their terms in office have organized as the Citizen Legislator Caucus. Whether you agree with the hi-tech industry on all these issues or not, it’s interesting to see if there is a difference between citizen legislators and those pursuing a career in Washington.
Citizen legislators ace the survey. Their average score was 87 percent. They even bested the House Internet Caucus. Nearly two-thirds of citizen legislators scored a perfect 100 percent. Among the Internet Caucus only 39 percent of members hit the top ranking.
Perhaps their real-world experience gives our citizen legislators a better understanding of what it takes to succeed in the real world of hi-tech and the real world of business, to the benefit of us all.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.