Debt Deal Online; Meanwhile, Obama Praises Internet Activists


If you’re into reading legislation yourself (zzzzzzz), the House Rules committee has now published the text of the proposed budget deal in both PDF and XML formats — apparently, the committee staff stayed up late to take care of the formatting and publishing. Ah, the glamorous life of a Hill staffer….

Also, President Obama gave a shout-out to citizen activists in his announcement of the deal last night, both of the digital and analog varieties, who’d flooded Twitter at his requrest and crashed Congressional websites and the House switchboard this week:

“Most of all, I want to thank the American people,” Obama said. “It’s been your voice, your letters, your emails, your tweets, your phone calls that have compelled Washington to act in the final days. And the American people’s voice is a very, very powerful thing.”

True or not — this deal had gotten to the point in the process where outside voices were unlikely to make much of a difference, since the real decisions were made in the negotiating room — it’s good politics to reward activists with a little love. The more they think their work matters, after all, the more likely they are to jump into action next time. Update: Well, White House spokesman Dan Pfeiffer is saying that the emails and Tweets mattered, so perhaps they did…either that or he’s just on-message.

Also in that Yahoo piece, note the (eternal) bias of the digital enthusiast for social media: the President cited letters, emails and phone calls alongside the tweets, but the reporter (and the headline writer) focused on the Twitter angle in the story. Thus it ever was.

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