An analysis proves that the Obama administration sets the record for something that is exactly the opposite of what they promised.
According to this “Big Story” at the Associated Press, the Obama Administration sets the record on responding to requests for information by claiming they found nothing. That’s quite a record for “the most transparent administration in history.”
The Obama administration set a record for the number of times its federal employees told disappointed citizens, journalists and others that despite searching they couldn’t find a single page requested under the Freedom of Information Act, according to a new Associated Press analysis of government data.
In more than one in six cases, or 129,825 times, government searchers said they came up empty-handed last year. Such cases contributed to an alarming measurement: People who asked for records under the law received censored files or nothing in 77 percent of requests, also a record. In the first full year after President Barack Obama’s election, that figure was only 65 percent of cases.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Friday he was not familiar with the figures showing how routinely the government said it can’t find any records, although the Justice Department also highlighted them in its own performance report. Earnest said federal employees work diligently on such requests, and renewed his earlier complaint that the U.S. records law has never applied to Congress since it was signed into law 50 years ago by President Lyndon Johnson, a Democrat.
So what are we to believe. Are the bureaucrats suddenly incompetent at finding requested information? Or are people for some reason now more likely to request documents that do not exist? Or is it possible that this administration is more willing to be dishonest in order to cover up information?
I think the last possibility is by far the most likely.
This is not the first time that Associated Press has released such a story. Here’s some lively commentary from March 2015 on that and other reports.
And here’s another report (again depending on the Associated Press) from earlier: