Republican Author of 2012 Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act Declared That A 'Sensitive Securi
U.S. Congressman Todd Russell Platts, Republican from Pennsylvania, made this speech on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives:
First, agencies must not be allowed to circumvent whistleblower protections through so-called "secrecy" regulations, such as a new category of information (labeled "Sensitive Security Information") created by the Department of Homeland Security. Whistleblower law understandably already exempts from whistleblower protections information which is classified or "specifically prohibited by law" from release. Classified information is information that is kept secret by Executive Order, not a hybrid category of information created by agency regulation like "Sensitive Security Information." Moreover, "prohibited by law" has long been understood to mean statutory law and court interpretations of those statutes, not to agency rules and regulations.
If the Federal Circuit Court broadens the "prohibited by law" exemption to include anything that an agency tries to keep secret under any of their regulations, a new loophole could be opened up that would substantially undermine Congressional intent in passing this bill. It is therefore important to once again make it clear: "Prohibited by law" has long been understood to mean statutory law and court interpretations of those statutes, not to agency rules and regulations. Any exceptions to these rights must be created by Congress, and Congress must act with specificity. That has been the law since 1978, and it continues to be the law.
Read more about this topic: Robert Mac Lean
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