Democracy Forward, on behalf of VoteVets, appealed a lower federal court’s ruling that the so-called Mar-a-Lago Council — an advisory body comprised of three men connected to President Trump through his Mar-a-Lago Club tapped to advise the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) — exercised too much influence over the agency to be subject to a federal transparency law.
Monday’s filing asks the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to reverse that decision. It is the latest in VoteVets’ ongoing lawsuit against the Trump Administration for its unlawful reliance on the Mar-a-Lago Council.
The Mar-a-Lago Council is an early and egregious example of the Trump administration’s pattern of illegally outsourcing public policy to groups of well-connected advisors, instead of experts, that operate outside of public view. Federal law guarantees the public’s right to know who these outside advisors are and on what topics they are seeking to influence public policy.
VoteVets’ opening appeal brief was filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on May 11, 2020.