Only two weeks have passed since Donald Trump’s departure from the White House, and the public continues to learn new details about his and his supporters’ efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election — such as his last-minute attempts to push the Justice Department to take his baseless case to the Supreme Court. We recently filed the following records requests to learn more:
Missouri and Maryland State Lawmakers’ Ties to Capitol Attack
Recent weeks have continually revealed disturbing news about the participation of several state elected officials in Trump’s Jan. 6 “Stop the Steal” rally, which culminated in the deadly mob attack on the U.S. Capitol building. Among them are Missouri State Rep. Justin Hill (who missed his own swearing-in ceremony to attend) and Maryland Del. Daniel Cox, who organized chartered buses to the event. We sent records requests to the Maryland Department of Legislative Services and the Missouri Legislature for communications and expenditures related to the rally.
Federal Executions Rule Change
The federal death penalty made a return in July 2020 when the Trump administration carried out the first federal execution since 2003. In November, the Justice Department published a change to federal regulations of the death penalty, allowing federal executions to be carried out by either lethal injection or “any other manner prescribed by the law of the State in which the sentence was imposed,” such as electrocution or firing squad. We sent a FOIA request to the Justice Department for records regarding the regulation change.
Political Appointee ‘Burrowing’ in the State Department
Over the past few months, we’ve been sending FOIA requests to agencies across the federal government as part of our ongoing investigation into the practice of “burrowing” — when a political appointee from a previous administration moves to a permanent career position. This week, we sent FOIA requests to the State Department for records reflecting political appointees converting to such positions, and for the email communications of department officials who may have recently changed their job status from political to career.
Part of Investigation: