Monday, January 31, 2011

FOIFT Joins Call to White House to Re-Calibrate DOJ’s FOI Position

In a letter, co-signed by 25  open-government groups and individuals, the Freedom of Information of Texas is calling upon the White House to direct the Department of Justice to re-calibrate its position regarding the release of public information.  This request follows a response to questions directed to Assistant Solicitor General Anthony M. Yang during oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court.  At a January 19, 2011 hearing, when Yang was asked if FOI exemptions should be narrowly interpreted, he reportedly replied "…stating such would 'distort' the 'very important values' Congress intended to protect through the FOIA's exemptions."  This directly contradicts an FOIA policy directive President Obama issued upon taking office.  Open Government Letter to the White House (1-31-11).