CEI Sues To Force Release of Carbon Tax Emails

WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 13, 2012 – On Tuesday, the Competitive Enterprise Institute filed suit to force the Treasury Department to release more than 7,300 emails believed to discuss a new “carbon tax” Obama administration allies in Congress are expected to propose in the upcoming lame duck session.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., seeks emails on official government accounts that CEI had requested under the Freedom of Information Act. Treasury has said nothing about this topic publicly, but the existence of such extensive email traffic likely reflects serious ongoing discussions between Treasury officials, outside pressure groups and other special interest groups.

CEI requested emails that included the word “carbon” from the agency charged with setting up cap-and-trade or a carbon tax. “It’s possible this office, whose sole purpose was to manage a cap-and-trade or carbon tax program was despairing, in thousands of emails, why people no longer use carbon paper,” said Christopher Horner, an attorney, senior fellow at CEI and author of the recent book, “The Liberal War on Transparency.” “Otherwise, it seems we have an enormous history over the past year of discussions with lobbyists, pressure groups, contributors and maybe even Republicans about how to impose this massive new energy tax.”

The administration has refused to issue the fee waivers routinely provided to non-profits and to which CEI was entitled because the agency did not respond to the request in a timely fashion. It cited the cost of photocopying 7,000-plus emails and claimed disclosure “would not significantly inform the public about operations or activities of government.”

“At first, Treasury illegally delayed responding to CEI for several months,” Horner said “Now, it refused to issue a waiver of fees even though courts have been clear these fees were designed for non-profit watchdog groups. It claims this would place an outrageous cost burden on the agency. It would cost the agency the cost of one CD disc and the time it would take to download the emails to the disc.”

Read more at the Competitive Enterprise Institute. 

Photo credit: peace chicken (Creative Commons)


  1. huapakechi says:

    Where's the teeth in the 'laws' that mandate government agencies respond to FOI requests in a timely manner?

    Why should government be allowed to ignore its' own laws and regulations? We citizens are forced to comply with reams of regulations by multiple agencies at threat of economic ruin, incarceration, or public execution (as witnessed by the incidents at Ruby Ridge and Waco).

    • Bind a Country with obligations, debt, restrictions and regulations! Tighten it until it makes us compliant! THEIR agenda? Our natural resources he's "saved" for them! When WE fall other democratic, freedom-loving Countries will crumble! We will be the "Capitol" of "The new World Order"! We have the largest reserves of oil, gas, and other minerals, in the world! Billions to Universities in other Countries to TEACH them how to extract oil and gas where there's none? We're being abandoned by our Representatives and Politicians! At the mercy of mercenaries, Communists, Marxists, radical Foreign and Domestic Factions! ALL those who are anti-American by their very actions, never give another term in our Government and especially our White House! Return to the principles, morals, decency, honor, honesty, and love of Country that our Forefathers fought so hard for! If we allow our Country to be further eroded we deserve what we get! America is being destroyed! Not a CLIFF where a ledge could catch you! A RAVINE! Rips, tears and mangles your body, all the way down! God help us!

    • Why should the government be "allowed"?? because they can and will and will continue to try to enslave the rest of us….do we really expect the congress to do it's job???

      • huapakechi says:

        We've let 'em get away with this for far too long. When the cable finally does snap, it will be nasty. The longer it's allowed to go, the worse it's going to get.

  2. WDC is nothing but a big playground with everyone playing games. Congress puts on a show by holding committee hearings and so called investigations but it is just to blow smoke up the A$$ of the taxpayers. Think about what we have learned about Fast & Furious after months of investigations and stalling on the part of the administration and justice dept. Has anyone been held accountable? A US citizen was murdered with one of the guns but no one has been brought to justice for it. Obama hasn't even been sworn in for his second term and already the lies flow like water over a dam. Don't expect anything to change for the better.

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