Now that Donald Trump has been sworn in, it’s opening up a number of new avenues for those who want to fight back against him. For instance, now that he’s officially become an officer of the government, documents such as those detailing his foreign financial ties have arguably become government documents under the law. And sure enough, the ACLU has immediately filed a Freedom of Information Act request to try to force the federal government to make that information public.
Anyone in the United States can file a FOIA request regarding any documents. But what makes this notable is that if the request is turned down by the federal government, the requester then has the legal right to file a lawsuit in federal court to force the documents to be released — and the ACLU clearly has the resources to fight that court battle. That means a federal judge will likely end up deciding whether Donald Trump’s financial documents should be made available to the public.
If the judge rules in favor of the ACLU, there would be nothing that Trump — who now runs the Executive Branch but who has no control over the Judicial Branch — could do to stop it from happening. Here’s the ACLU press release detailing the Freedom of Information Act action it’s taking. And for those who support what the ACLU is doing, here’s their donation link.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report