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Other Cases of Interest

  • House v. Mnuchin (D.C. Circuit 2020). On September 25, 2020, the D.C. Circuit Court held that the House has standing to seek a court order to stop the President from diverting appropriated funds to unauthorized spending on a border wall, overruling a lower court decision dismissing the lawsuit. The 3-judge appellate panel held that, just as the House has standing — without the Senate — to seek enforcement of a House subpoena, it has standing to seek enforcement of its Constitutional authority over the power of the purse.  Read Appeals Court Opinion   Read overruled District Court Opinion
  • CREW v. Trump (D.D.C. 2020). D.C. District Court opinion finding that, due to the wording of the relevant statute and D.C. Circuit precedent, courts are without authority to compel presidential compliance with the Presidential Records Act. This ruling will make it more difficult for Congress to oversee presidential actions.

    Read District Court Opinion

  • CREW v. Trump (D.C. Cir. 2020) D.C. Circuit Court opinion finding that White House visitor logs once under the control of the Secret Service but then transmitted to the Executive Office of the President are not “agency records” subject to FOIA requests.  This ruling will make it more difficult for Congress to oversee presidential actions.  Read Appeals Court Opinion

  • Cause of Action Institute v. Commerce Dept. (D.D.C. 2020). Amicus brief filed by eight bipartisan members of Congress in a FOIA lawsuit by a public interest organization to obtain a Commerce Department report on automobile tariffs, noting that the report was required by law to be printed in the Federal Register and disputing the agency’s authority to defy the law based upon an opinion issued by the Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel.  Read Amicus Brief

  • Wittes v. Trump (D.D.C. 2020).  Lawsuit filed by two researchers and a public interest organization to compel the Trump Administration to send to Congress and release to the public a report required by law to disclose its legal and policy frameworks for exercising military force.  No report was filed by the March 1, 2020 statutory deadline.  This suit could help clarify Congress’ right to compel executive branch reports and make them public.  Read the Complaint.

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