recommended reading

White House raises We the People response threshold to 100,000 signatures

spirit of america/Shutterstock.com

The White House raised the threshold for petitioners on its We the People website to receive an official administration response from 25,000 to 100,000 signatures late Tuesday.

The move comes a few days after the administration responded to several petitions calling for states to secede from the union in the wake of President Obama’s reelection. Those petitions came from every state in the union but only nine crossed the former threshold of 25,000 signatures and only one, from Texas, crossed the new 100,000 signature threshold.

Officials raised the response threshold from 5,000 signatures to 25,000 signatures in October 2011 after the site proved more popular than expected during its first month online. White House Digital Strategy Director Macon Phillips cited a similar signature spike in November 2012, to justify the current threshold increase in a Tuesday blog post.

Phillips described both threshold increases as a “good problem to have,” noting that more than 60 percent of the petitions that crossed the response threshold in 2012 did so in the final two months of the year. During those two months about 73,000 new petitions were created and 2.4 million new users registered with We the People, he said.

“Turns out that ‘good problem’ is only getting better,” he said, “so we're making another adjustment to ensure we’re able to continue to give the most popular ideas the time they deserve.”

The new threshold does not apply to petitions that were already filed before the announcement, he said. The administration has responded to 162 petitions since We the People was launched, he said.

The recent spike in petition responses seems to have been spurred by renewed interest in the site following the secession petitions and a separate cluster of petitions following the December shooting of 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

At least five petitions have received more than 100,000 signatures so far:

Those petitions:

(Image via spirit of america / Shutterstock.com)

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • It’s Time for the Federal Government to Embrace Wireless and Mobility

    The United States has turned a corner on the adoption of mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices, outpacing traditional desktop and laptop sales by a wide margin. This issue brief discusses the state of wireless and mobility in federal government and outlines why now is the time to embrace these technologies in government.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • A New Security Architecture for Federal Networks

    Federal government networks are under constant attack, and the number of those attacks is increasing. This issue brief discusses today's threats and a new model for the future.

    Download
  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Software-Defined Networking

    So many demands are being placed on federal information technology networks, which must handle vast amounts of data, accommodate voice and video, and cope with a multitude of highly connected devices while keeping government information secure from cyber threats. This issue brief discusses the state of SDN in the federal government and the path forward.

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.