OpenTheGovernment is concerned that the transcript of President Trump’s May 10 conversation with Russian officials is at risk, and is calling on the White House to immediately make available a copy of the full record of the meeting to the congressional Intelligence Committees.
Washington, DC – Today, OpenTheGovernment called on the Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General to take immediate action to ensure the preservation of and public access to records relating to the dismissal of former FBI Director James Comey. The factors surrounding the firing have called into question the integrity of the Justice Department’s investigation into matters relating to the 2016 election, and the Inspector General must take prompt measures to restore public confidence.
Senate misses opportunity to demand greater transparency from Justice Department nominee on “secret law”
WASHINGTON, May 12, 2017 – On May 10th, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the confirmation of Steven A. Engel to oversee the Office of Legal Counsel -- an office in charge of reviewing potential executive branch actions and whether they violate the law.
On May 2, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) released its annual surveillance report, revealing that the National Security Agency (NSA) collected 151 million phone records on Americans in 2016.
On April 24, the Supreme Court declined to hear ACLU v. CIA, ending the ACLU’s attempt to have the report from the Senate’s investigation into the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation Program (the “Torture Report”) deemed subject to FOIA and marking a significant defeat for government openness and transparency.
At today's House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the FBI’s use of facial recognition technology, serious secrecy and privacy concerns were raised about the collection, sharing and use of such biometrics data. Greater oversight and transparency, areas of serious concern for open government groups and civil rights advocates alike, are critical to ensuring the public’s right to know about the expanding collection and use of such data.
In the spirit of Sunshine Week, and National Freedom of Information Day, Senators Feinstein, Leahy, Cornyn, and Grassley sent letters to the Trump Administration on March 15, 2017, calling for full compliance with the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), and strong implementation of the 2016 FOIA reforms. The letters request information on the specific steps that are underway to carry out the reforms passed last year, and to improve proactive disclosure of information.
On March 3, Senators Claire McCaskill and Tom Carper wrote to White House Counsel Donald McGahn, voicing their concern about reports of White House officials using personal electronic messaging accounts while conducting official business, and asking that he ensure that President Trump and his staff are complying with the Presidential Records Act (PRA).