The Freedom of Information Act is one of the crown jewels of the modern American republic. The law, which requires public access to most government documents and communications, has made it significantly easier for Americans and the journalists who inform them to hold government officials accountable.
In a day and age when government gets ever-bigger, FOIA protects Americans from being ruled in secret. Or at least, it does so when officials actually follow the law — which, unfortunately, they often do not.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's use of private email to conduct State Department business represents just one common method of frustrating the fulfillment of lawful FOIA requests. Another is for the government to charge outrageously high fees for disclosing documents that belong to the public. Continue>>>