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GOP Law Enforcement Chiefs Created Secret Bulletin Board for Donors

Image: GOP Law Enforcement Chiefs Created Secret Bulletin Board for Donors
(Press Association via AP Images)

By    |   Monday, 12 February 2018 11:33 AM

The Republican Attorneys General Association has a secret online bulletin board that permits large donors to help formulate legal policy, MapLight and The Intercept reported on Monday.

RAGA often tells those working for GOP attorneys general to review files posted on the file-sharing website before taking part in conference calls hosted by the group's nonprofit policy arm, which tries to get Republicans elected to the top law enforcement job at the state level.

Ethics experts say that the secret bulletin board is shielding the correspondence from the public, even though communications between elected officials and RAGA should be subject to disclosure under open records laws.

"It looks like a clear effort on the part of these attorneys general's offices to evade their transparency requirements under open records laws by keeping documents on this website," said Campaign Legal Center lawyer Brendan Fischer. "They have the ability to access these records, the records are connected to their official duties and they're just refusing to turn them over."

What makes this procedure even more improper, ethics experts contend, is that attorneys general are the ones responsible for ensuring compliance with open record laws.

But RAGA spokesman Zack Roday dismissed such allegations, insisting that the bulletin board is only a tool for the group's staff to share policy documents with the overall team.

Ethics watchdogs have in recent years been critical of other actions RAGA has taken, according to The New York Times.

One such example was how members of the group worked with donors such as Devon Energy to challenge air pollution regulations set during the Obama administration.

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The Republican Attorneys General Association has a secret online bulletin board that permits large donors to help formulate legal policy.
gop, law enforcement, chiefs, secret, online, donors
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2018-33-12
Monday, 12 February 2018 11:33 AM
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