The D.C. Council is set to vote tomorrow on Kenyan McDuffie’s government reform bill. But first, Tommy Wells says he’ll be introducing three amendments aimed at beefing up the legislation.
“Right now, it’s easy for an incumbent to call organizations or companies that have business under us, either as a ward member or an at-large member, and to essentially shake businesses down,” he says. “So absolutely my amendments would impact that.”
The first two amendments would prohibit corporations and companies with city contracts worth more than $1 million from giving any donations to political campaigns. Should those fail, Wells hopes that the third—-which mandates that donors disclose whether they have contracts with the city—-would at least increase transparency over contracting.
“[To the] people that have direct interest in the government doing things for them, and frankly large amounts of money at stake, it would just say, ‘You shouldn’t be giving to candidates,’” Wells says.
Wells doesn’t expect his amendments to make it into the final bill, but says they’re an important symbolic gesture.
“I think it’s a process, and we keep at it and keep it in the minds of the residents and the voters,” he says.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery