Judge Rules White House Doesn’t Have to Comply with FOIA Email Request

Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly today ruled that the White House’s Office of Administration does not have to comply with Freedom of Information Act requests for documents relating to the White House email scandal. Judge Kollar-Kotelly claimed that the OA does not qualify as a federal agency under FOIA. Up until the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington had requested the documents, the OA had a policy of complying with FOIA requests. After CREW’s attempt to get the documents, however, the Bush Administration shifted course, claiming that the OA was not legally required to comply with FOIA – and so no longer would. Today’s ruling, validating the new policy, is a blow to open government principles. Congress should fix the problem by writing a stronger FOIA.