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Friday, September 28, 2012

Obama Transparency Fail: 19 Of 20 Cabinet Agencies Failed To Comply With The Law

By Susan Duclos

Bloomberg tested the Obama administration cabinet-level agencies and found that 10 of 20 of them failed to comply with transparency laws.

As Obama nears the end of his term, his administration hasn’t met those goals, failing to follow the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act, according to an analysis of open-government requests filed by Bloomberg News.

Nineteen of 20 cabinet-level agencies disobeyed the law requiring the disclosure of public information: The cost of travel by top officials. In all, just eight of the 57 federal agencies met Bloomberg’s request for those documents within the 20-day window required by the Act.

“When it comes to implementation of Obama’s wonderful transparency policy goals, especially FOIA policy in particular, there has been far more ‘talk the talk’ rather than ‘walk the walk,’” said Daniel Metcalfe, director of the Department of Justice’s office monitoring the government’s compliance with FOIA requests from 1981 to 2007.
The entire piece is worth the read.

Data and Graphics: Testing Obama's Promise of Government Transparency

What Bloomberg News requested

 • A list of trips taken out of Washington, D.C., by the head of the agency
• Documents showing dates and modes of transport
• A breakdown of travel expenses, including all gifts or reimbursements covered by outside sources