If you want to hear the details of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal the Obama administration is hoping to pass, you’ve got to be a member of Congress, and you’ve got to go to classified briefings and leave your staff and cellphone at the door.
If you’re a member who wants to read the text, you’ve got to go to a room in the basement of the Capitol Visitor Center and be handed it one section at a time, watched over as you read, and forced to hand over any notes you make before leaving.
For a president who ran on transparency to promote something like this would be comical if it weren’t so disturbing. If there’s nothing to hide in the bill, why not make it publicly available? This also seems like a power trip for the trade representative who seems to enjoy a feeling of power from being able to have such tight restrictions on who can see what.