For Immediate Release

DC Court of Appeals Orders Secret Service to Show Cause in Two Cases Over CREW FOIAs

WASHINGTON - On April 14, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued an order requiring the Secret Service to show cause why its appeals in two cases concerning CREW's requests for White House visitor logs should not be dismissed for lack of appellate jurisdiction. In response to CREW's Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for White House visitor records of specified individuals, the Secret Service argued the records are presidential, not agency records, and therefore not subject to release under the FOIA. After losing this issue before District Court Judge Royce C. Lamberth, the government appealed - only to have the D.C. Circuit rule the appeal was premature because the government had not yet been ordered to produce any documents.

On remand, the Secret Service continued to assert the requested records are presidential but also claimed it could neither confirm nor deny the existence of any responsive records (a "Glomar" denial) because to merely reveal the identities of visitors to the president and vice president might reveal privileged information about the subject of those visits. Once again, Judge Lamberth ruled the records are in fact agency records, rejected the Glomar denial, and ordered the government to process CREW's requests immediately and produce all non-exempt records. The government filed appeals and now the D.C. Circuit appears to view the current appeals as premature because the district court has not issued any order purporting to be a "final judgment." The government must respond to the D.C. Circuit's show cause order within 30 days.

SCROLL TO CONTINUE WITH CONTENT

Never Miss a Beat.

Get our best delivered to your inbox.

Read The Court of Appeals' order in the Related Documents section on the right.

###

Our pandemic coverage is free to all. As is all of our reporting.

No paywalls. No advertising. No corporate sponsors. Since the coronavirus pandemic broke out, traffic to the Common Dreams website has gone through the roof— at times overwhelming and crashing our servers. Common Dreams is a news outlet for everyone and that’s why we have never made our readers pay for the news and never will. But if you can, please support our essential reporting today. Without Your Support We Won't Exist.

Please select a donation method:



Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to promoting ethics and accountability in government and public life by targeting government officials -- regardless of party affiliation -- who sacrifice the common good to special interests. CREW advances its mission using a combination of research, litigation and media outreach.

Share This Article

More in: