File photo of a courtroom. (credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

New Md. Bill Removes Hurdles to Public Records

Open government advocates are announcing a bill that improves access to public records in Maryland.


The White House is defending the National Security Agency following a new report that the agency has been scanning the data it collects to map out some Americans' social connections. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Obama Administration Censored, Withheld Record Amount Of Government Documents In 2012

The Obama administration answered more requests from the public to see government records under the Freedom of Information Act last year, but more often than it ever has it cited legal exceptions to censor or withhold the material, according to a new analysis by The Associated Press. It frequently cited the need to protect national security and internal deliberations.


File photo of the U.S. Supreme Court building. (credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Supreme Court Conflicted On Allowing Outside Use Of FOIA

The Supreme Court seems unsure of whether it’s legal for a state to block out-of-staters from getting public documents through its Freedom of Information Act law.


Credit: Amanda Edwards/Getty Images

D.C. DMV Releases List of Banned Vanity Plates

In response to a Freedom of Information Act request, the D.C. Department of Motor Vehicles recently released a 68-page list of forbidden vanity plates to


A new Associated Press study has found that the party of the president who picked a judge is not a good predictor of whether a judge will be tough on a defendant found guilty. (credit: BERTRAND GUAY/AFP/Getty Images)

AP Investigation: Federal Sentences Still Vary Widely

A new study shows that federal judges are handing out widely disparate sentences for similar crimes 30 years after Congress tried to create fairer results, but the differences don’t line up with the party of the president who appointed the judges, despite any impressions that Republicans or Democrats may be tougher or softer on crime.