The governor of New York has refused to release the questionnaires completed by candidates who sought to fill Hillary Clinton’s vacated U.S. Senate seat.
The Associated Press reports it requested the documents under New York’s Freedom of Information Law. The questionnaire — essentially an applicant background check — was sent to an unknown number of candidates as part of Gov. David Paterson’s vetting process, which resulted in the appointment of upstate New York lawyer Kirsten Gillibrand to the junior senator seat. The form requested information on professional licenses, URLs for personal blogs and Facebook pages, and whether the candidate had ever hired an illegal immigrant.
The Paterson administration refused to release any portion of the questionnaires on the grounds that doing so would violate candidates’ privacy, the AP said.
Blair Horner of the New York Public Interest Research Group told the AP the governor appeared to intentionally limit the records it created during the vetting process "to avoid FOIL." He, along with other open government advocates, called for the release of the records related to the process separate from AP’s request.