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Supreme Court's Reading of FOIA Rights Voids ICP Delaware Win, Lucha at UN

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, April 29 -- The US Supreme Court is not a beat Inner City Press covers day to day, but this time we must. In Monday's decision in McBurney v. Young, Justice Samuel Alito ruled that Virginia limiting its Freedom of Information Act responses to state residents does not burden interstate commerce, and that no Constitutional right was at stake.

Inner City Press pursued and won an earlier case against a similar Delaware law, winning in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals that the rights or "privileges and immunities" to be a journalist were impacted by being denied access to records about HSBC.

The litigants in McBurney v. Young reached out to Inner City Press, it was was an amicus, along with other publications.

Now Inner City Press' earlier win in Lee v Minner is, in effect, erased, and it's back to the drawing board. More fights, for more information, now at and through the UN, including through the new Free UN Coalition for Access.

  Just as Alito's logic doesn't seem to make sense when applied to Delaware, a state which because it incorporates businesses from all over has impacts well beyond its own citizens, it would make less sense applied to the United Nations.

 On that, compare the type of documents about UN inner working obtained by Inner City Press under US FOIA from the Voice of America (samples here and here and here) with the outright refusal of the UN to even state who it allowed into Inner City Press' office during a non-consensual raid on March 18, 2013.

 The difference? The UN has no FOIA. But FUNCA is fighting for it. Watch this site.

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