Congress Needs To Upgrade Their Visual Aids

I was reading an interesting article about Congressional visual aids over at Politico and it got me thinking.

The piece talked about the history of using old school charts and graphs and how they have been instrumental in illustrating points since they started showing up after cameras were allowed in Congress.

The article also gives some love to Ross Perot, who is credited as the father of chart usage, which I definitely agree with.

What I was left wondering which the article didn’t touch on much is why doesn’t members of congress use Power Point instead of those antiquated boards on easels. I believe if members can use twitter, then they should be able to be able to use a show their points, facts, and figures with a medium that’s not used for third grade science projects.

After talking with a couple of my Capitol Hill friends (you know you are a DC person if you have a couple of friends that work on Capitol Hill) and I got answers ranging from laptops are banned from the chamber to it looks bad on C-SPAN- both valid arguments.

But still we have the technology to get over the broadcast issues, and if computers are banned from the chamber then I feel bad for the person taking the official congressional record.

What do you think? Anyone else have an answer to why Congress is still a little behind on the times?

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