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May 19, 2007

Strengthen the Freedom of Information Act! has joined a huge coalition asking the Senate Majority and Minority leaders to pass the OPEN Government Act of 2007 to strengthen the Freedom of Information Act. Here is the letter our coalition sent to the Senate


Dear Senator Reid and Senator McConnell

:We write on behalf of the undersigned group of business, public interest, and historical groups and associations to endorse the OPEN Government Act of 2007 (S. 849), as introduced by Senator Patrick Leahy and Senator John Cornyn.

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is the public’s most significant tool for ensuring integrity and accountability from the federal government. Unfortunately, FOIA’s promise of ensuring an open and accountable government has been seriously undermined by the excessive processing delays that FOIA requesters face across the government. The OPEN Government Act would:

• Close loopholes in FOIA;
• Help the public get timely responses to FOIA requests; and
• Improve agency accountability and require better management of FOIA programs.

The public’s confidence in the executive branch has reached a dramatic low point. The OPEN Government Act of 2007 would demonstrate bipartisan congressional leadership to restore public faith in government and to
advance the ideals of openness that our democracy embodies. The Senate Judiciary Committee has reported favorably upon the bill without any amendments. We urge you to support this legislation and help it move quickly to the Senate floor for a vote.


Here are the signatories

:Alliance for Justice America Association of Law Libraries American Association of Small Property Owners American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) American Families United American Library Association Animal Welfare Institute ASPCA Assassination Archives and Research Center Association of American Publishers Bill of Rights Defense Committee Biodiversity Conservation Alliance Blancett Ranches, Aztec, NM Californians Aware Californians for Western Wilderness Center for Democracy and Technology Center for Energy Research Center for National Security Studies Citizen Action New Mexico Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) Common Cause Community Recovery Services Conservation Congress Doctors for Open Government, Inc. The E-Accountability Foundation/ Electronic Frontier Foundation Environmental Defense Institute Environmental Integrity Project Ethics in Government Group Fernald Residents for Environmental Safety & Health, Inc. Florida First Amendment Foundation Forest Guardians Friends Committee on National Legislation Friends of Animals Friends of the Wild Swan Georgia ForestWatch Georgians for Open Government Government Accountability Project Great Basin Mine Watch Gun Owners of America HALT, Inc The Health Integrity Project HEAL Utah The Humane Society of the United States Idaho Sporting Congress, Inc. Indiana Coalition for Open Government The James Madison Project Law Librarian Association of Greater New York Law Librarians Association of Wisconsin League of Women Voters of the U.S. Liberty Coalition Los Alamos Study Group Maine Association of Broadcasters Mine Safety and Health News The Multiracial Activist National Coalition Against Censorship National Freedom of Information Coalition National Security Archive National Taxpayers Union National Treasury Employees Union National Whistleblower Center Natural Resources Defense Council The New Grady Coalition No FEAR Coalition Northern California Association of Law Libraries Northwest Environmental Advocates Nuclear Watch New Mexico Okanogan Highlands Bottling Company OMB Watch Open Society Policy Center Oregon Natural Desert Association Oregon PeaceWorks Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, Inc. People For the American Way Project On Government Oversight Public Citizen Education Fund Republican Liberty Caucus Reynolds, Motl & Sherwood, PLLP The Rutherford Institute Sagebrush Sea Campaign Semmelweis Society International Snake River Alliance Society of American Archivists Society of Professional Journalists Southern California Association of Law Libraries Southwest Research and Information Center The Student Health Integrity Project Tax Analysts Tri-Valley CAREs (Communities Against a Radioactive Environment) Union of Concerned Scientists VA Whistleblowers Coalition Western Environmental Law Center Western Lands Project Western Resource Advocates The Wilderness Society Wild Wilderness Wilderness Workshop

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