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Constitutional Law — privileges and Immunities Clause — FOIA

U.S. Supreme Court

Civil

Constitutional Law — privileges and Immunities Clause — FOIA

A state law restricting FOIA requests to state citizens does not violate the Privileges and Immunities Clause.

Petitioners’ sweeping claim that the Virginia FOIA violates the Privileges and Immunities Clause because it denies them the right to access public information on equal terms with Commonwealth citizens is rejected because the right to access public information is not a “fundamental” privilege or immunity of citizenship. The Court has repeatedly stated that the Constitution does not guarantee the existence of FOIA laws. See, e.g., Los Angeles Police Dept. v. United Reporting Publishing Corp., 528 U. S. 32. Moreover, no such right was recognized at common law or in the early Republic. Nor is such a sweeping right “basic to the maintenance or well-being of the Union.” Baldwin, supra, at 388.

667 F. 3d 454, affirmed.

12-17 McBurney v. Young

Alito, J.; Thomas, J., concurring.

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