White House opens up to the public's petitions

The Obama administration announced on Sept. 1 a project named We the People, a new online feature that gives the public a direct line into the White House.

We the People lets the public create and also sign petitions seeking action from the government. If a petition gathers enough signatures, staff members at the White House will consider the petition and issue an official response after reviewing the policy.

Visitors need to have an account to create or sign petitions.

White House officials will post an official response to petitions that get 5,000 or more signatures in 30 days. All the signers of that petition will receive an e-mail message with the administration’s response.

“When I ran for this office, I pledged to make government more open and accountable to its citizens. That’s what the new We the People feature on WhiteHouse.gov is all about,” President Barack Obama said.

Visitors to WhiteHouse.gov can begin submitting petitions in September. To sign up for an alert when it launches and preview the feature, visit WhiteHouse.gov/WeThePeople.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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