May 31, 2007 | By Hugh D'Andrade

Anti-Secrecy Bill Gets Secret Hold

A bill designed to combat government secrecy won?t be coming to a vote on the Senate floor any time soon. An anonymous Senator who apparently thinks the government isn?t secretive enough has placed a secret hold on the bill.

The Open Government Act of 2007 (pdf), sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), would strengthen the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) by reducing delays in release of government records. FOIA is a crucial tool used by all kinds of public interest organizations, including EFF, to compel the release of documents and information that are of urgent interest to the public.

The Society of Professional Journalists has begun a campaign to unmask the Senator who placed the hold. Visit their site to find out if your Senators have made a statement denying involvement in the hold. And visit our Action Center to let your representatives know that you support the bill.

Update: The anonymous Senator who blocked the Open Government Bill has come forward. Senator John Kyl (R-AZ) admits to having placed the hold on the bill, because of what he said was the Justice Department's "uncharacteristically strong" opposition.

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