Investigation Update: The VA continues to subject certain FOIA requests to “sensitive review,” but the agency is keeping records about the practice secret

Over the past year, Cause of Action Institute (“CoA Institute”) has been investigating the Department of Veterans Affairs for its continued politicization (here, here, and here) of the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”).  That politicization takes the form of “sensitive review,” which refers generally to the practice of giving certain […]

Investigation Update: GSA Continues to Block Disclosure of White House Directive on Congressional Oversight Requests, Reveals Sensitive Review Procedure for Media Requesters

Cause of Action Institute (CoA Institute) received an interim response yesterday from the General Services Administration (GSA) on a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request that suggests the agency is deliberately stonewalling the release of a White House directive instructing agencies on how to respond to congressional oversight requests. Records […]

Investigation Update: VA releases 2014 memo on “sensitive review,” but fails to conduct an adequate search for more recent FOIA guidance

In August 2018, a group of eight Democratic Senators, wrote to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to express alarm over the possible politicization of the agency’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) processes. Specifically, they were concerned about the involvement of political appointees in the FOIA decision-making process.  Cause of […]

New Records Reveal the FAA Has Been Tracking FOIA Media Requesters

The Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) was introduced to ensure public access to records of the Executive Branch.  Unfortunately, agency FOIA processes have long suffered from politicization at the hands of bureaucrats and political appointees who hope to frustrate the disclosure of embarrassing or newsworthy documents.  A recent report about […]

NOAA Records Demonstrate Expansion of Sensitive Review FOIA Procedures

The Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) ensures all citizens equal and open access to records of the administrative state.  It should come as no surprise, however, that the Executive Branch has never been thrilled about disclosing its records to the general public.  At various times, the White House has orchestrated […]