The Washington Post

Congressional hearing title trend: forget subtlety

The best congressional hearing title we’ve heard this week comes in the form of a question: “Why should Americans have to comply with the laws of foreign nations?”

That’s to be the topic of a July 17 session of the House Natural Resources subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs, according to an e-mail circulated this week to staff. The hearing will examine the Lacey Law, a conservation statute adopted in 1900 that prevents U.S. companies from using wood harvested illegally abroad.

Of course, some folks on the Hill were grousing that it sounds like the panel has reached a conclusion on the query posed in the hearing title (conservatives have blasted the Lacey law after federal agents raided the Gibson guitar company, which was suspected of using illegally harvested timber).

Seems to fit into an emerging trend among hearing titles, perhaps best exemplified by hearings put on by House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa, who has a flair for catchy titles — and, perhaps, foregone conclusions. Recent ones have included “The IRS: Targeting Americans for Their Political Beliefs” and “Security Failures in Benghazi.”

Our question: Who needs subtlety?

Emily Heil is the co-author of the Reliable Source and previously helped pen the In the Loop column with Al Kamen.


Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read


Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Video curated for you.