Thanks and a note on the Morley v. CIA road ahead

Thanks all the positivity on the court’s decision.  I think Bill S. has quoted the essence of the decision, which is good news for FOIA requesters everywhere.  What’s gratifying is the court’s rather commensensical affirmation that people who want to know more about the CIA and the events of November 1963 are acting reasonably.

In addition, this court has previously determined that Morley’s request sought information “central” to an intelligence committee’s inquiry into the performance of the CIA and other federal agencies in investigating the assassination. Morley v. CIA, 508 F.3d 1108, 1118 (D.C. Cir. 2007). Under these circumstances, there was at least a modest probability that Morley’s request would generate information relevant to the assassination or later investigations.”

Unfortunately,, the archaic appellate process has delivered us back into the tender mercies of the oft-reversed Judge Leon. We are exploring possible remedies. If you have expertise in federal appellate court procedures, maybe you have some ideas.

I will keep you posted, if you keep posting the story of the court’s decision on your social media.

5 thoughts on “Thanks and a note on the Morley v. CIA road ahead”

  1. This may be off-topic but speaking of the road ahead — has Bernie Sanders said anything publicly about the JFK assassination in general or JFK records in particular?

  2. There must be some relevant case law precedents for such situations where a judge, despite clearly and repeatedly being instructed by an appellate court to go back and re-consider the proper legal factors/tests to the case at hand, fails more than once to do so. This points to either incompetence on the part of the judge, or worse, a possible bias or animus on the part of the judge against the appellant, which should in itself be sufficient grounds for having the judge removed from the case altogether, on the basis that justice cannot be obtained from that judge, and permitting him to continue with the case would bring the administration of justice into disrepute.

    1. I’m not an attorney (obviously) but in one sense there are no precedents for the JFK assassination. No trial for the immediately apprehended and accused assassin of the President.
      No legal representation for him. No record of his questioning. He get’s assassinated in the basement of the jail. His assassin had, immediately (literally), and ultimately multiple attorneys available. One a flamboyant litigator of National acclaim to the “stars”. Who Really paid for them as Ruby was broke, in trouble with the IRS? But I digress.
      The information the case pertains to does serve of interest to the public. To me, I’m part of the public. I’d like to know what is there.
      Hopefully your points will cause consternation for those administering justice, and in turn, Revelations for the public.

    2. Dave, the normal protocol is for the appellate court to remand the case to the U S District Judge for further proceedings consistent with the Court of Appeals decision. That is what the court has ordered here, I believe.
      Jeff’s counsel could request that Judge Leon recuse himself from subsequent proceedings, but that decision would be up to Judge Leon.
      As I have stated here previously, Judge Leon has an otherwise good reputation as an independent arbiter of cases. I don’t think he has any animus toward Jeff or his counsel (as far as I know), and he is bound to apply the instructions of the D C Circuit.
      I suspect Jim Lessar can persuade him to do the right thing, even if he has mishandled the case so far. After 52 years we have learned the value of patience. Just get it right.

      1. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how Judge Leon does with his latest set of instructions. But he seems to have taken an unnecessarily narrow approach to the public benefit test thus far. Ask anyone with the slightest interest in the JFK case (well OK, maybe not the Lone Nutters) if they think Jeff’s FOIA request of the CIA had a public benefit.

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