Transition team opens Change.gov for questions, votes

The Obama transition team has opened up Change.gov, President-elect Barack Obama’s official Web site, to questions from the public.

By mid afternoon on Dec. 10, the day the site launched the new feature, more than 56,000 votes had been recorded on some 930 questions submitted by more than 1,400 people, transition officials said.

Today that number stood at more than 500,000 votes on 6,300 questions from about 9,300 people. The questions included "What will you do to establish transparency and safeguards against waste with the rest of the Wall Street bailout money?" and "How long will it take for you to implement your health care policy to insure those who do not have any insurance at all?"

The new feature is a further step in the transition team’s pursuit of citizen involvement in the transition, officials said. Previously, that had been done through discussion forums, but with this question feature the Change.gov community “has jumped into a true two-way dialogue," the transition team said in a posting on the site.

People who want to pose questions and vote on issues must sign up and select a password before they can do so. The questions on the site move up or down on the popularity scale depending on the votes they receive, and the most popular questions selected by the Change.gov community will receive regular answers from members of the transition team, officials said.

About the Author

Brian Robinson is a freelance writer based in Portland, Ore.

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