Although the election has passed, it seems that emails controversies are here to stay. According to the Indianapolis Star, Vice President-elect Mike Pence is doing all that he can to hide a potentially harming email he received from a political ally. Ironic, considering how Hillary Clinton’s emails played such a big role in getting him elected.
The former governor of Indiana received a position paper from Daniel Hodge, the chief of staff for Texas governor Greg Abbott, soliciting support to sue the Obama administration due to its immigration executive action. Indiana joined sixteen other states in filing the lawsuit against Obama.
The real controversy, however, sits with the fact that Pence used taxpayer money to hire outside counsel – Indianapolis law firm Barnes & Thornburg – for Indiana’s lawsuit. When William Groth, a labor lawyer, made a public records request in 2014 in an effort to find out how much taxpayer money was used, Hodge’s paper was edited.
Groth is now trying to appeal Marion Superior Court’s April decision claiming the court could not overturn the public access decisions made by Pence’s administration. According to Pence’s lawyers, the email is legal work that is protected by Indiana’s Access to Public Records Act.
According to Indiana University media professor Gary Lanosga, “It comes down to this—the court is giving up its ability to check another branch of government, and that should worry people.”