Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) has reintroduced legislation that would allow Americans to record conversations with federal employees from most executive branch agencies, both in person and over the phone.
Jenkins previously introduced the legislation in 2013.
Known as the Citizen Empowerment Act (H.R. 2856), the legislation will require most executive agency employees to notify individual citizens during a phone call between the two, or during in-person interviews, that either party has the right to record the interaction. Currently, the law only allows individuals to record in-person conversations with IRS officials under certain circumstances.
“We have seen too many examples of our nation’s bureaucracy making life harder for Americans and their families,” said Jenkins. “The Citizen Empowerment Act will ensure all Americans are aware of their rights and give individuals a tool to protect themselves or their business when a government inspector comes calling. It is time to stand up against federal overreach and abuse. Americans deserve a government that expands their rights, not the powers of big government.”
The bill was previously introduced in the 113th Congress as H.R. 2711, the Citizen Empowerment Act and was eventually included in H.R. 2879, the Stop Government Abuse Act, which passed the House of Representatives on August 1, 2013 on a 239 – 176 vote.