News Roundup: Trump Has Learned His ‘Lesson’

Was his impeachment, in the now-infamous words of Sen. Susan Collins, a “pretty big lesson” for President Donald Trump? If this past week is anything to go by, it was — or at least, his acquittal by the Senate was. As was widely predicted, Trump has been emboldened, and his sights appear to be trained on making the Justice Department his personal political arm for helping allies and punishing perceived enemies.

To start (well, not quite to “start,” as the politicization of the department has been a running theme of the Trump administration), on Tuesday came the stunning news that the Justice Department’s leadership had intervened in the case against Trump ally Roger Stone, undercutting the 7 to 9 years’ imprisonment recommendation of the department’s own prosecutors. All four of them immediately withdrew from the case. Jessie Liu, the U.S. attorney who had overseen the Stone case, had been nominated for a job at the Treasury, but Trump abruptly pulled her nomination and on Thursday, she resigned from the administration. 

That this shocking reversal occurred shortly after the president himself had tweeted his displeasure at the sentencing recommendation raised alarm bells. Trump even congratulated Attorney General William Barr for “taking charge of” the case. In an interview with ABC News on Thursday, Barr maintained that he is “not going to be bullied or influenced by anybody” when doing his job. To find out whether that’s true, American Oversight filed new Freedom of Information Act requests for communications senior Justice Department officials had with the White House or the prosecution team, and for the required written justification for leadership’s intervention in the case.

Meanwhile, U.S. Attorney John Durham, who was assigned to examine the origins of the investigation into Russian election interference, is reportedly looking into an unsubstantiated theory suggesting the CIA under former Director John Brennan was trying to keep other agencies from seeing secrets it had gathered in the Russia probe so as to delegitimize Trump’s 2016 victory. In an interview on Thursday, Brennan said Durham’s line of inquiry was “another indication that Donald Trump is using the Department of Justice to go after his enemies any way he can.”

Then today, the New York Times reported that Barr has assigned an outside prosecutor to look at the criminal case of another Trump associate, former National Security Adviser Michael T. Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. Other politically sensitive cases are also being scrutinized. “The moves amounted to imposing a secondary layer of monitoring and control over what career prosecutors have been doing in the Washington office,” said the New York Times

And of course, the Justice Department having established what Barr called an “intake process” for dirt Rudy Giuliani supposedly gathered on the president’s political opponents is another serious concern. Trump, who the Associated Press reports “has told confidants … that he felt both vindicated and strengthened by his acquittal in the Senate,” now admits to having sent Giuliani to Ukraine to get such damaging information, something he denied during the impeachment inquiry. Trump even engaged in a new quid pro quo on Twitter on Thursday, demanding New York drop investigations and lawsuits related to his administration in exchange for the Department of Homeland Security lifting a ban on New York residents enrolling in certain travel programs.

Yes, the president does appear to have learned a lesson. But so have we, and that is that aggressive oversight works and is more important than ever. Read on:

New Ukraine Documents: American Oversight obtained two new sets of Ukraine-related documents this week, one from the Department of State and another from the Department of Defense. The Defense records, released today, are largely duplicative of many documents previously released to the Center for Public Integrity (CPI) in December 2019, but more documents are coming, including as soon as next week. You can see what we’ve obtained so far here. And check out this list of our unanswered questions to find out what we’re still looking for — we’re determined to find out who else was “in the loop” of the president’s corrupt Ukraine scheme.

Behind the Redactions: On Tuesday, Just Security reported that it had obtained unredacted versions of emails American Oversight obtained through FOIA litigation from the Office of Management and Budget, revealing new details about the extent to which OMB misled Congress about the withholding of military aid to Ukraine. Tuesday’s revelations detail OMB’s efforts to suppress the Pentagon’s worries over the legality of the aid freeze — and highlight the involvement of Mark Paoletta, the OMB general counsel who has been the one reviewing redactions on released documents and who himself was a central figure in the administration’s effort to withhold aid.

Challenging the Redactions: American Oversight, along with Democracy Forward, submitted an amicus brief in support of a CPI court filing that seeks the lifting of overly heavy redactions on Ukraine documents CPI obtained. Much of the substance of those documents was withheld under a Presidential Communications Privilege claim, which the filing and our amicus brief argue should not be used to cover up evidence of crimes. “Governmental privileges cannot become a tool to mask misconduct or illegality,” said American Oversight Executive Director Austin Evers.

Pompeo’s Bullying: American Oversight filed a new lawsuit today, seeking records related to any complaints concerning the conduct of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, including from his time as director of the CIA. NBC’s Richard Engel reported last fall that according to former senior intelligence officials, Pompeo’s bullying at the CIA had even driven some employees “to quit or seek new assignments.” 

Benczkowski’s Russian Bank Waiver: In late 2018, American Oversight had uncovered records indicating that Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski — who used to work for Alfa Bank, a Russian bank owned by oligarchs — had been recused from Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference, and that he had received authorization to participate in certain matters related to a “former client.” Recently, Benczkowski received an ethics waiver allowing him to participate in a confidential criminal matter involving Alfa Bank. We filed a request this week for records that could shed more light on this waiver.

Colorado Health Policy: Colorado’s efforts to expand access to affordable health care — namely, the establishment of a state reinsurance program and taking steps to create a public option — have faced strong opposition from the hospital industry. We want to know whether and to what extent industry allies have received support from top officials at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, including Administrator Seema Verma.

Perry’s Pipeline Post: After exiting the Trump administration, former Energy Secretary Rick Perry didn’t waste much time before joining the board of Energy Transfer LP, a natural gas and propane pipeline transport company responsible for the Dakota Access Pipeline. Energy Transfer’s history of lobbying the Energy Department while Perry was secretary has raised questions about the ethics of his new position. We filed a FOIA request for Energy officials’ communications with Perry or other representatives of the company since the former secretary joined the board.

Russian Oligarch Gets a Pass: The Daily Beast reported this week that the Treasury has “mysteriously” backed off its stated plan to level new sanctions against the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, who had ties to former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort and alleged business dealings with Secretary Steven Mnuchin. American Oversight filed a lawsuit late last year for Treasury records related to a Deripaska-connected company that had invested in a Kentucky aluminum plant.

McConnell-Chao Kentucky Favoritism: Last year, American Oversight uncovered communications indicating that the office of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao had created a separate channel for prioritizing requests from the home state of her husband, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. We filed public records requests with the Kentucky governor’s office for former Gov. Matt Bevin’s communications with Chao’s office or McConnell’s office about specific grants.

Iran’s Missile Strikes: The number of U.S. troops who experienced traumatic brain injuries after Iran’s retaliatory Jan. 7–8 strikes on bases in Iraq keeps rising and is now at more than 100, despite Trump’s initial statements that no Americans were harmed. We filed a number of FOIA requests with the Departments of Defense and State for any injury assessments as well as communications with the White House or key members of Congress about the injuries, which Trump has dismissed as “headaches.”

Shadow Banks: Thanks to new guidance for the Financial Stability Oversight Council, it is now significantly more difficult to apply certain designations to nonbank financial entities known as “shadow banks,” which experts warn will result in much more lenient regulation of these entities and potentially serious consequences for the stability of the financial system. We filed FOIA requests with multiple agencies for officials’ communications with industry representatives to learn whether and to what extent industry interests were behind this policy change.

Election Official Against Automatic Voter Registration: Christy McCormick, a commissioner on the woefully under-resourced Election Assistance Commission (EAC), gave a presentation in August 2019 at the National Conference of State Legislatures in which she expressed her opposition to automatic voter registration out of questionable First Amendment and security concerns. We’re asking for EAC communications about that presentation to shed light on its creation.

Kemp–Trump Campaign Communications: In December, Ga. Gov. Brian Kemp gave the president’s private business some free advertising when he posted on social media about having had a “great cheeseburger” at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C. This was not too long after we had obtained records indicating that Kentucky taxpayers had initially footed the $686 bill for former Gov. Matt Bevin’s stay at the hotel in January 2019. A Kemp spokesperson said that no Georgia taxpayers’ money was spent at the hotel, but we want to know more about Kemp’s relationship with the Trump family and the president’s re-election campaign. We filed records requests for related communications with the governor’s and the secretary of state’s office.

State Accountability Project: We filed requests with multiple Georgia counties and the secretary of state’s office for communications related to voter identification requirements for transgender or gender non-conforming individuals, and asked for key Florida legislatorscommunications containing specific vote-related terms. On Thursday, we joined All Voting is Local and other groups in sending a letter to the Florida secretary of state, urging the office to ensure that Florida’s online voter registration system is working correctly in advance of the upcoming Feb. 18 deadline. We’re also continuing the expansion of our investigation into voter suppression in the states, filing records requests in Wisconsin for communications between top state election officials and high-ranking members of the state legislature.

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Florida Department of State, Hernando County - Florida, Hillsborough County - Florida, Leon County - Florida, Martin County - Florida, Okaloosa County - Florida
March 16, 2020

Energy Department Releases Records from Rick Perry’s May 2019 Trip to Ukraine

Department of Energy
March 13, 2020

News Roundup: Continuing Our Investigation of Coronavirus Response

Department of Defense, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, Federal Reserve, Georgia Secretary of State, Texas Secretary of State, Washington State Department of Health, Wisconsin
March 11, 2020

OMB Releases New Ukraine-Related Emails to American Oversight

Office of Management and Budget
March 6, 2020

News Roundup: Rising Coronavirus Fears and Sinking Public Trust

Administration for Children and Families, Agency for International Development, Briscoe County - Texas, Bureau of Land Management, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Cobb County - Georgia, Criminal Division, Customs and Border Protection, Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Department of the Treasury, Department of Transportation, Department of Veterans Affairs, Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Federal Reserve, Food and Drug Administration, Freestone County - Texas, Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Georgia Department of Driver Services, Georgia Secretary of State, Gwinnett County - Georgia, Hall County - Texas, Hill County - Texas, Hood County - Texas, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Jones County - Texas, Kendall County - Texas, King County - Washington, Lavaca County - Texas, Leon County - Texas, Limestone County - Texas, Loving County - Texas, Morris County - Texas, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Office of Information Policy, Office of Management and Budget, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, Scurry County - Texas, Starr County - Texas, Swisher County - Texas, Texas Secretary of State, Veterans Health Administration, Victoria County - Texas, Washington State Department of Health
March 2, 2020

In the Documents: Read the Script for an HHS Anti-Obamacare Ad That Was Apparently Never Released

Department of Health and Human Services
February 28, 2020

“Final decision rests with POTUS”: Newly Released Defense Department Emails Show Esper, Pompeo and Bolton Thought Ukraine Aid Should Have Continued

Department of Defense
February 28, 2020

News Roundup: Launching Our Investigation of Trump’s Authoritarian Purges

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Agriculture, Department of Defense, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of State, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Florida Department of State, Hillsborough County - Florida, Leon County - Florida, National Security Agency, Office of the Director of National Intelligence
February 21, 2020

New State Department Ukraine Documents Released

Department of State
February 21, 2020

News Roundup: The Post-Impeachment Purge and the Knock of Authoritarianism

Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Department of the Treasury, Fish and Wildlife Service, Food and Drug Administration, Office of Management and Budget, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, United States Secret Service
February 21, 2020

New Lawsuit Seeks Records of Mitch McConnell’s Influence at Transportation, Energy, State Departments

Department of Energy, Department of State, Department of Transportation
February 21, 2020

When the Government Uses Redactions to Hide Evidence of Wrongdoing

Department of Defense, Department of Justice, Office of Management and Budget
February 20, 2020

American Oversight Sues for Communications of Two Top Interior Department Officials

Bureau of Land Management, Department of the Interior
February 14, 2020

New Lawsuit Seeks Records of Complaints About Mike Pompeo’s Conduct

Central Intelligence Agency, Department of State
February 11, 2020

The Facts Are Still Coming Out

Department of Defense, Office of Management and Budget
February 11, 2020

The Ukraine Investigation’s Unanswered Questions

Congress, Department of Energy, Department of Justice, Department of State
February 10, 2020

Ukraine Investigation Update: Volker Text Messages

Department of State
February 7, 2020

News Roundup: Acquittal Isn’t the End

Cobb County - Georgia, DeKalb County - Georgia, Department of Energy, Department of Justice, Department of State, Florida Department of State, Fulton County - Georgia, Georgia Secretary of State, Gwinnett County - Georgia, Office of Management and Budget
February 6, 2020

The Investigation Continues: New Lawsuit Seeks Pence Ukraine Records

Department of State
February 5, 2020

Statement on Senate Impeachment Vote: Oversight Must and Will Continue

Congress
February 4, 2020

Energy Department Releases New Batch of Ukraine Documents

Department of Energy
January 31, 2020

News Roundup: Hear No Evil, See No Evil

Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Executive Office for Immigration Review, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Harris County - Texas, Texas Office of the Governor
January 31, 2020

Lifted Redactions Reveal August 2019 Esper Communications About Zelensky, Ukraine Assistance

Department of Defense, Office of Management and Budget
January 28, 2020

Energy Department Releases Ukraine Documents to American Oversight

Department of Energy
January 27, 2020

American Oversight Is Investigating Impeachment Adviser Pam Bondi’s Communications with State Department Official

Department of State
January 24, 2020

News Roundup: Evidence of Obstruction

Clayton County - Georgia, Department of Defense, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of Transportation, Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Aviation Administration, Federal Communications Commission, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Office of Management and Budget, Tennessee Valley Authority, Texas Attorney General, Texas Office of the Governor, Texas Secretary of State, Texas Senate
January 23, 2020

In the Documents: How the 2018-2019 Government Shutdown Affected Federal Science Agencies

Department of Commerce, Department of Homeland Security, Department of the Interior, Department of Transportation, Federal Emergency Management Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Geological Survey
January 22, 2020

OMB Releases 192 Pages of Ukraine Records to American Oversight

Office of Management and Budget
January 17, 2020

News Roundup: The Evidence Continues to Mount

Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Clayton County - Georgia, Department of Agriculture, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Justice, Department of State, Environmental Protection Agency, Hancock County - Georgia, Jefferson County - Georgia
January 15, 2020

Updated Timeline: Messages About Yovanovitch Surveillance Happened Same Week as Giuliani-Pompeo Calls

Department of State
January 13, 2020

Energy Department Agrees to Release Ukraine Documents This Month

Department of Energy
January 10, 2020

State Department’s Release of Volker Calendars and Text Messages Raises Further Questions

Department of State
January 10, 2020

News Roundup: Presidential War Powers and New Impeachment Documents

Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, Department of Veterans Affairs, Environmental Protection Agency, Florida Department of Corrections, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Florida Department of State, Florida Office of the Governor, Hernando County - Florida, Nassau County - Florida, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, Okaloosa County - Florida, Seminole County - Florida
January 10, 2020

In the Documents: Investigating the Trump Administration’s Legal Analyses for Potential Use of Force Against Iran

Department of State
January 8, 2020

State Department Releases Additional Ukraine Documents to American Oversight

Department of State
January 7, 2020

Did the Trump Administration Abuse the Redactions Process?

Department of Defense, Office of Management and Budget
January 3, 2020

In the Documents: New Information on Scott Pruitt’s Fleet of Luxury SUVs

Environmental Protection Agency
December 27, 2019

American Oversight’s 2019 in Review: Nine Important Stories We Uncovered

December 23, 2019

American Oversight’s Investigation into the Restoration of Voting Rights in Florida

Broward County - Florida, Collier County - Florida, Duval County - Florida, Florida Department of State, Florida House of Representatives, Florida Office of the Attorney General, Florida Office of the Governor, Florida Senate, Gadsden County - Florida, Hardee County - Florida, Hendry County - Florida, Hillsborough County - Florida, Leon County - Florida, Miami-Dade County - Florida, Monroe County - Florida, Palm Beach County - Florida, Taylor County - Florida, Washington County - Florida
December 23, 2019

An Update on Our Investigation into Georgia’s Election System and Voter-Roll Purges

Bartow County - Georgia, Carroll County - Georgia, Catoosa County - Georgia, Clayton County - Georgia, Cobb County - Georgia, Decatur County - Georgia, DeKalb County - Georgia, Dougherty County - Georgia, Fulton County - Georgia, Georgia Department of Driver Services, Georgia Office of the Governor, Georgia Secretary of State, Gwinnett County - Georgia, Hancock County - Georgia, Jefferson County - Georgia, Lowndes County - Georgia, Macon-Bibb County - Georgia, Paulding County - Georgia, Randolph County - Georgia, Rockdale County - Georgia
December 23, 2019

Texas Officials’ Communications with ‘Voter Fraud’ Activists

Cameron County - Texas, Dallas County - Texas, Harris County - Texas, Hidalgo County - Texas, Starr County - Texas, Tarrant County - Texas, Texas Attorney General, Texas House of Representatives, Texas Office of the Governor, Texas Secretary of State, Texas Senate, Travis County - Texas, Zavala County - Texas
December 21, 2019

Defense Department Ukraine Documents Released to American Oversight

Department of Defense
December 20, 2019

News Roundup: Beyond Impeachment — The Investigations Continue

Administration for Children and Families, Congress, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Customs and Border Protection, Department of Defense, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Department of Transportation, Federal Communications Commission, Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission, Food and Drug Administration, Government Accountability Office, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Office of Management and Budget
December 18, 2019

Why Trump Has Met the Standard for Obstruction of Congress

Congress, Department of Defense, Department of State
December 17, 2019

American Oversight Sues for U.S. Embassy Communications About Trump Properties

Department of State
December 13, 2019

News Roundup: Stephen Miller’s Extremist Network

Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Carroll County - Georgia, Congress, Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Department of the Treasury, Environmental Protection Agency, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Office of Foreign Assets Control, Office of Management and Budget, Texas Attorney General
December 12, 2019

American Oversight Sues for Treasury Communications About Russian Investment in Kentucky Plant

Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control
December 11, 2019

Lawsuit over Administration’s Unlawful Seizure of Trump-Putin Meeting Notes Moves Forward

Department of State, National Archives and Records Administration
December 6, 2019

News Roundup: Impeachment Report, Border Wall Contracts, and Pompeo’s Meeting with GOP Donors

Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State
December 3, 2019

House Committee Impeachment Report References State Department Documents Obtained by American Oversight

November 27, 2019

News Roundup: Thankful for FOIA

Department of Agriculture, Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Kentucky Office of the Governor
November 27, 2019

Behind the Scenes: How American Oversight Forced the Release of State Department Ukraine Records

Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, Office of Management and Budget
November 25, 2019

American Oversight Sues Justice Department for Ukraine-Related Communications

Department of Justice
November 22, 2019

State Department Releases Ukraine Documents to American Oversight

Department of State
November 22, 2019

News Roundup: Fiona Hill’s Warnings, Nikki Haley’s Emails, and Matt Bevin’s Stay at Trump’s Hotel

Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Kentucky Office of the Governor
November 21, 2019

Nikki Haley Sent Classified Emails on an Unclassified Email System

Department of State
November 20, 2019

Sondland’s Testimony Highlights State Department Obstruction

Department of Energy, Department of State
November 19, 2019

Former DOJ Civil Rights Official Acknowledges He Made Incorrect Statement in Sworn Declaration

Department of Justice
November 15, 2019

News Roundup: Impeachment Inquiry Goes Public

Bartow County - Georgia, Carroll County - Georgia, Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Council on Environmental Quality, Dallas County - Texas, Decatur County - Georgia, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, Department of Veterans Affairs, Florida House of Representatives, Georgia Secretary of State, Harris County - Texas, Lowndes County - Georgia, Paulding County - Georgia, Travis County - Texas
November 14, 2019

How ‘Sharpiegate’ Turned a Simple Misunderstanding into a Media Frenzy — and Headache for NOAA Employees

Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
November 8, 2019

News Roundup: Ukraine-Related Documents, Hurdles for Asylum-Seekers, and Chad Wolf’s Involvement in Family Separation

Department of Agriculture, Department of Defense, Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Environmental Protection Agency, Florida Office of the Governor, Office of Information Policy, Office of Legal Counsel, Office of Management and Budget
November 7, 2019

What We Learned from the Yovanovitch and McKinley Transcripts

Congress, Department of State
November 1, 2019

News Roundup: Impeachment Votes and Sonny Perdue’s Georgia Connections

Department of Agriculture, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, National Park Service
October 31, 2019

In the Documents: Interior Department Officials Arranging VIP Tours for Trump Administration Figures and Allies

Department of the Interior, National Park Service
October 31, 2019

State Department Agrees to Produce Ukraine Records to American Oversight by November 22

Department of State
October 25, 2019

News Roundup: Court Chips Away at Trump Administration Obstruction

October 24, 2019

Research Tool: Ukraine-Trump Key Figures and Documents

Department of Commerce, Department of Energy, Department of State, Department of the Treasury
October 23, 2019

Federal Judge Says He Will Order State Department to Begin Turning Over Requested Ukraine Documents

Department of State
October 22, 2019

New Lawsuit Seeks Perry and Brouillette Ukraine Documents and Communications about Biden Investigation Effort

Department of Energy
October 18, 2019

News Roundup: Corruption, Plain and Simple

Customs and Border Protection, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State
October 18, 2019

Court Calls for Hearing on Emergency Motion for Ukraine Documents

Department of State
October 11, 2019

News Roundup: Impeachment, Obstruction, and More Questions about Rick Perry

Administration for Children and Families, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Customs and Border Protection, Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security
October 4, 2019

News Roundup: The Public Needs Answers

Central Intelligence Agency, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of State
October 4, 2019

Former Top Civil Rights Official John Gore Made Misleading Statements in Declaration to Federal Court

Department of Justice
October 4, 2019

Pompeo’s Obstructionism Won’t Work

Department of State
October 2, 2019

Pompeo’s Letter Is the Trump Administration’s Opening Salvo of Obstruction

Department of State
October 1, 2019

We’re Suing the State Department for Giuliani-Ukraine Documents

Department of State
September 27, 2019

News Roundup: From the Top Down

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Collier County - Florida, Council on Environmental Quality, Department of Commerce, Department of Energy, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Interior, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Office of Management and Budget
September 27, 2019

Using FOIA to Fight Trump Administration Obstruction

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Department of the Interior
September 25, 2019

Release of Trump–Zelensky Call Readout Raises Questions About Justice Department Involvement

Agency for International Development, Department of Defense, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Treasury
September 20, 2019

News Roundup: Trump, Giuliani, and Ukraine

Administration for Children and Families, Agency for International Development, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Customs and Border Protection, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, Department of Transportation, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Federal Reserve, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, National Institutes of Health, Starr County - Texas, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Texas Attorney General, Texas Secretary of State, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
September 18, 2019

In the Documents: Texas Elections Officials’ Close Ties to ‘Voter Fraud’ Activists

Starr County - Texas, Texas Attorney General, Texas Secretary of State
September 12, 2019

New Lawsuit Seeks State Department Records of Jared Kushner’s Middle East Trips

Department of State
September 6, 2019

News Roundup: Trump’s Enthusiastic Support for New Drug Raises Questions

Council on Environmental Quality, Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, Department of Transportation, Department of Veterans Affairs, Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Food and Drug Administration, Georgia Department of Driver Services, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Securities and Exchange Commission, Texas Attorney General
August 27, 2019

Investigating HHS Secretary Alex Azar’s Connections to Pharmaceutical Companies

Department of Health and Human Services
August 13, 2019

More Examples of Personal Email Use and Heavy-Handed Outside Influence at the VA

Department of Veterans Affairs
June 25, 2019

Lawsuit Seeks Records of Trump Family Influence over Minnesota Mining Project

Bureau of Land Management, Department of Agriculture, Department of the Interior, United States Forest Service
June 7, 2019

News Roundup: Investigating Outside Influence and Political Appointments at the State Department

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of Transportation, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Small Business Administration
June 4, 2019

Documents Reveal Extent of Koch-Funded VA Privatization Group’s Influence

Department of Veterans Affairs
May 30, 2019

Trump Administration Appeals Court Decision Ordering It to Turn Over Communications with Congress About ACA Sabotage

Congress, Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
May 3, 2019

News Roundup: Above the Law

Congress, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Department of the Treasury, Department of Veterans Affairs, General Services Administration, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
May 3, 2019

New Evidence of Emoluments Violations Prompts American Oversight Lawsuit

Department of Justice, Department of State
April 30, 2019

American Oversight Sues HUD for Communications Related to Sale of Trump-Tied Housing Complex

Department of Housing and Urban Development
April 17, 2019

Why Congress — and the American People — Deserve to See Trump’s Tax Returns

Congress, Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, White House
April 12, 2019

News Roundup: DeVos, Mnuchin, Barr Testify in Congress

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Congress, Council on Environmental Quality, Department of Defense, Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of State, Department of the Interior, Department of the Treasury, Environmental Protection Agency
April 2, 2019

Federal Judge Rejects Administration’s Argument for Withholding Communications with Congress about ACA Sabotage

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
March 29, 2019

News Roundup: The Mueller Investigation Is Over, But the Swamp Is Thriving

March 25, 2019

The Corruption Continues: Mueller Has Finished His Work. American Oversight Has Not.

March 13, 2019

Two Years of American Oversight

March 12, 2019

Investigating the Trump Administration’s Efforts to Sell Nuclear Technology to Saudi Arabia

Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Department of State, Department of the Treasury, International Trade Administration, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
March 8, 2019

News Roundup: Lawsuits Against Departments of Defense, Agriculture, and Health and Human Services

March 8, 2019

Watchdogs Sue HHS Following Women’s Health Website Overhaul

Department of Health and Human Services
March 4, 2019

FBI Headquarters Investigation: Agencies Refusing to Search for Records of Trump Interference to Protect Hotel

March 1, 2019

HHS Secretary Azar Calendars Show Multiple Meetings with Conservative Health-Care Groups

Department of Health and Human Services
February 21, 2019

New Lawsuit Seeks HHS Communications with Anti-Abortion Groups

Department of Health and Human Services
February 5, 2019

Lawsuit: Why Did Government-Run Site Attached to Trump Hotel Stay Open During the Shutdown?

General Services Administration, National Park Service, Office of Management and Budget
January 9, 2019

Investigating the Acting Defense Secretary’s Ties to Boeing

Department of Defense
January 3, 2019

Government Site Attached to Trump Hotel Stays Open Despite Shutdown and We Want to Know Why

December 12, 2018

Audit the Wall: No Plans, Funding or Timeline — And No Wall

Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security, Department of State
November 19, 2018

Ivanka Trump Email Investigation Sparked by American Oversight FOIAs

Department of Commerce, Department of Education, Department of Labor, Department of the Treasury, Small Business Administration
November 8, 2018

American Oversight Sues State Department for Trump Organization, Kushner Companies Records

Department of State
October 23, 2018

New Lawsuit Seeks Details of White House, Trump Organization Involvement in FBI Headquarters Decision

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation, General Services Administration, Office of Management and Budget
May 3, 2018

Court Rules in Favor of American Oversight in Trump Hotel Lawsuit

General Services Administration
April 17, 2018

Lawsuit Seeks Scott Pruitt and Nino Perrotta Travel and Security Spending Records

Environmental Protection Agency
April 6, 2018

New: EPA Documents Show Details of Pruitt Office Renovations

Environmental Protection Agency
March 16, 2018

Sunshine Week Blog: FOIAs Will Continue Until Accountability Improves

March 9, 2018

American Oversight Sues HHS and CMS for Verma Ethics Records

Centers For Medicare and Medicaid Services, Department of Health and Human Services
February 9, 2018

New Lawsuit Seeks DHS Border Wall Emails with White House, Fox News, Border States

Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security
December 20, 2017

Update: EPA IG Refuses to Investigate Controversial Contract

Environmental Protection Agency
December 17, 2017

Trump Transition GSA Emails and Memorandum of Understanding

General Services Administration
December 11, 2017

State Department Emails Show How Embassy Websites Promoted Mar-a-Lago

Department of State
December 1, 2017

American Oversight and Environmental Working Group Seek Answers about Dourson’s Work at EPA

Environmental Protection Agency
November 16, 2017

American Oversight and EWG Seek Records of Industry Influence at Department of Energy

Department of Energy
November 2, 2017

FOIA In Action: Helping Journalists Expose Questionable Behavior By Trump’s Appointees

Department of Education, Department of Labor, Small Business Administration
October 31, 2017

American Oversight Sues State Department for Records Showing Efforts to Compel Mexico to Pay for Border Wall

Department of State
October 24, 2017

Texts Show SBA Staff Tried to “Crop the Opulence” from Trump Hotel Event

Small Business Administration
October 17, 2017

Health Care Lawsuit: Fighting for Transparency

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
October 17, 2017

5 Questions for Attorney General Sessions

Department of Justice
October 5, 2017

Lawsuit Seeks Records of Lolita Zinke’s Travel, Role at Department of the Interior

Department of the Interior
October 3, 2017

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s Calendars Show Deep Industry Connections

Environmental Protection Agency
September 29, 2017

“Serious, Likely Irreparable” Damage from Border Wall

Department of the Interior
September 15, 2017

Congress Enters Legal Fight to Block Release of Obamacare Repeal Emails

Congress, Department of Health and Human Services
September 13, 2017

“News to Me!” – Inside the Health Care Emails

Office of Management and Budget
September 7, 2017

Investigating EPA’s Attacks on a Journalist

Environmental Protection Agency
September 7, 2017

Third Set of Health Care Emails Again Shows Trump Administration Effort to Hide Negotiations

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
September 2, 2017

DOJ Confirms Trump Lied in “Wiretap” Tweets

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
August 30, 2017

Watchdog Groups Launch Joint Investigation into EPA Oversight of Toxic Substances Control Act

August 28, 2017

Statement on EPA IG Investigation of Pruitt Travel

Environmental Protection Agency
August 4, 2017

Ethics 101: Twitter Ads Follow President Trump to Bedminster, NJ

August 2, 2017

New Health Care Documents Show Effort to Hide Details of Negotiations

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
August 1, 2017

American Oversight Obtains Attorney General Sessions SF-86 Signature Page

Department of Justice
August 1, 2017

Statement on Waiver of Environmental Regulations for Border Wall

July 27, 2017

Call for OSC Investigation of Pruitt Travel to Oklahoma

Environmental Protection Agency
July 24, 2017

American Oversight Launches “Defund Trump” Investigation

Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Council on Environmental Quality, Department of Agriculture, Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Department of Labor, Department of the Interior, Department of the Treasury, Department of Transportation, Department of Veterans Affairs, Environmental Protection Agency, General Services Administration, Office of Management and Budget, Office of Science and Technology Policy, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
July 21, 2017

American Oversight Calls for Resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
July 20, 2017

American Oversight Sues HHS and OMB For Secret Trump Letter Outlining Plan to Weaken Obamacare

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget, White House
July 13, 2017

DOJ Releases Redacted Page of Sessions’s SF-86 to American Oversight

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
June 28, 2017

Ethics Watchdog Sues GSA for Trump International Hotel Lease Records

General Services Administration
June 27, 2017

American Oversight Sues EPA to Release Pruitt’s Calendars and Communications with Carl Icahn

Environmental Protection Agency
June 22, 2017

American Oversight and Environmental Working Group Challenge EPA Over Failure to Release Pesticide Records

Environmental Protection Agency
June 16, 2017

Watchdog Group Files Lawsuit on Trump Border Wall

Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security, Department of the Interior, Office of Management and Budget
May 24, 2017

After American Oversight Lawsuit, DOJ Confirms that Sessions Lied about Russian Contacts

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
May 16, 2017

American Oversight Demands Release of Comey-Trump Memos

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
May 12, 2017

Letter to Burr and Warner: Senate Should Request Trump-Comey Tapes

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
May 10, 2017

Statement on the Firing of FBI Director Comey

Federal Bureau of Investigation
May 10, 2017

Ethics Watchdog Calls for IG Investigation of Sessions for Violating Recusal

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation
May 4, 2017

Watchdog Files Lawsuit, Seeks Injunction for HHS, OMB Health Care Negotiation Record

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
May 3, 2017

Ethics Watchdog Calls for Investigation into Pattern of Promoting Trump Family Ventures on Government Websites

Department of State
April 25, 2017

American Oversight Files IG Complaint over State Department Promotion of Mar-A-Lago

Department of State
April 19, 2017

American Oversight Sues DOJ for Release of Trump Tower Wiretap Records, Russia Investigation Documents

Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation, White House
April 12, 2017

American Oversight and Environmental Working Group Demand Release of Pruitt Communications with Pesticide Industry

Environmental Protection Agency
April 4, 2017

10 Questions about the Border Wall that Deserve Big, Beautiful Answers

Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security, Department of the Interior
March 29, 2017

Call for GSA Inspector General to Review Trump Hotel Lease Decision

General Services Administration
March 28, 2017

Statement on Trump Administration Proposal to Build Border Wall South of Rio Grande

Department of the Interior
March 24, 2017

American Oversight Launches Investigation of President Trump’s Border Wall

Department of Homeland Security
March 23, 2017

American Oversight Demands Release of Secret Health Care Negotiations

Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Management and Budget
March 22, 2017

Statement on Intelligence Committee Chairman Nunes’ Actions

March 17, 2017

American Oversight Calls on Congress to Investigate Trump Aide’s Reported Ties to Nazi Group

Office of Government Ethics, White House