During Sunshine Week, Justice Dept Urges New Category of Gov’t Secrets

"In the middle of Sunshine Week, when news organizations and advocacy groups promote government transparency, the Obama administration urged Congress on Tuesday to keep secret a whole new category of information even under the Freedom of Information Act."

"A few miles away, the White House organized a conference call with two senior administration officials to preview an announcement by President Barack Obama about an important China trade issue but told reporters that no one could be quoted by name. The officials were U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and the deputy national security adviser for international economic affairs, Michael Froman.

On Capitol Hill, the director of the Justice Department’s office of information policy, Melanie Ann Pustay, told senators they need to protect against public disclosures of material about cybersecurity, critical U.S. computer networks, industrial plants, pipelines and more. Businesses have sought such a new exemption under the law for at least 10 years."

Richard Lardner reports for the Associated Press March 13, 2012.


"Eric Holder Hails Transparency Progress" (Politico)

"Sunshine Week Renews Debate on Obama and FOIA" (Washington Post)

"Eric Holder Higlights Uptick in FOIA Releases" (ExecutiveGov)

"W.H. Not So Transparent on Freedom of Information" (Politico/Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX))

Source: AP, 03/14/2012