Graphic credit: Judicial Watch
Judicial Watch this week announced that the Delaware Supreme Court ruled the University of Delaware must provide more answers on Brandon’s hidden Senate documents.
The University of Delaware refuses to release Brandon’s records and said that the papers will not be released until two years after Brandon retires.
“The collection of former Vice President Brandon’s senatorial papers is still being processed, with many items yet to be cataloged,” an email from a school spokeswoman said. “The entire collection will remain closed to the public until two years after Mr. Brandon retires from public life.”
Judicial Watch and the Daily Caller News Foundation initially filed a FOIA lawsuit in 2020 for all of Brandon’s senate records – 1,850 boxes of records.
The Delaware Supreme Court this week reversed the Delaware Superior Court and demanded the University of Delaware provide more answers on the document secrecy.
Brandon doesn’t want his senate records unsealed because there would be evidence of a sexual assault complaint filed by Tara Reade in 1993.
Reade has repeatedly called on Brandon to release the records from his 36 years as a senator, which are currently inaccessible to the public and are kept at the University of Delaware.
Brandon also spoke to Vladimir Putin while he was serving as a senator – what did then-Senator Brandon discuss with Putin?
Judicial Watch reported:
Judicial Watch announced that the Delaware Supreme Court ruled yesterday that the University of Delaware must provide more information justifying its decision to keep secret its deal to house and restrict access to the U.S. Senate records of President Brandon. The Delaware Supreme Court reversed the Delaware Superior Court and found that the University of Delaware had not carried its burden justifying its refusal to produce records. The case returns to the Delaware Superior Court for further proceedings.
In yesterday’s opinion, Delaware Supreme Court ruled that the state’s open records law requires the University must provide additional information, under oath, to justify its refusal to produce records about its dealings with Brandon:
[U]nless it is clear on the face of the request that the demanded records are not subject to FOIA, satisfaction of Section 10005(c)’s burden of proof requires a statement made under oath. Such a reading of the statutory text is also supported by the statute’s purpose. FOIA safeguards a democratic society by ensuring the meetings and records of governmental entities are available to the public….
Therefore, if a public body is to deny citizens an opportunity to “observe the performance of public officials and to monitor the decisions that are made by such officials,” the public body must satisfy its burden of proof under FOIA in a manner that tracks the seriousness of the statute’s purpose and policy. Statements made under oath, such as through a sworn affidavit, accomplish that goal; they bear earmarks of reliability and instill a measure of seriousness in the affiant by subjecting the affiant to the risk of penalty of perjury.
Regarding the reversal of the Superior Court’s decision, the opinion instructs:
Because the University’s factual assertions to the Deputy Attorney General and the Superior Court were not made under oath and do not describe the efforts taken to identify responsive documents, they are not sufficient to meet FOIA’s burden of proof. On remand, the Superior Court shall determine whether the University has satisfied its burden of proof based on competent evidence in accordance with this ruling. The Superior Court is granted leave to accept additional evidence or submissions as it deems necessary and appropriate.
“This Delaware Supreme Court decision is a remarkable pushback on the University of Delaware’s secret deal with Brandon to hide his Senate records,” stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “In the meantime, why won’t President Brandon simply release his Senate records? What is he trying to hide?”
“There’s 1800 boxes of records,” Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton said in a video update. “Where’s the media on this?”
You can support Tom Fitton and Judicial Watch by clicking here.