Dunlap v. Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, No. 18-5266 (D.C. Cir. 2019)Annotate this Case
Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap filed suit seeking access to documents from the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. The DC Circuit held that, because the emails at issue were neither "similar" to the "examples" of covered documents listed in the December 2017 injunction opinion, nor "substantive disclosures" within the plain meaning of that opinion, they were not among the disclosure obligations imposed by that injunction. Therefore, the court held that the January 2019 order that required their release changed the legal relationship between the parties and hence was immediately appealable.
On the merits, the court held that Secretary Dunlap could not clearly and indisputably show that the emails he sought fell within the work of the Commission, and thus the district court lacked jurisdiction to entertain his request for their disclosure. Accordingly, the court reversed the district court's January 28, 2019 order insofar as it required the release of such emails.