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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Homeland Insecurity in Texas...

So, the governor of Texas and the DPS are arguing that the expense records -- the expense records! -- of the security detail are sensitive. Sure, because evildoers will no doubt be honing in on where the Texas Guv's security detail stayed...a year ago....

The Texas Department of Public Safety is appealing a court decision that granted the Houston Chronicle and two other newspapers access to travel records filed by members of Gov. Rick Perry's security detail.

Attorney General Greg Abbott's office filed notice of appeal Monday with the 3rd Court of Appeals in Austin.

The Chronicle, the San Antonio Express-News and the Austin American-Statesman sued the DPS for refusing to release copies of expense vouchers for troopers' travel with the governor last year and in 2001.

The state contended that releasing the information could endanger the governor, his family and other people traveling with him.

But state District Judge Scott Jenkins questioned that claim and ruled Aug. 1 that the newspapers should be granted access to the records. Attorneys for the newspapers argued that the expense vouchers were "super-public information" that didn't pose a threat to anyone.

Perry usually pays his own travel expenses from political funds, but his bodyguards have spent thousands of taxpayer dollars guarding the governor on trips throughout the U.S. and to several foreign countries.

The newspapers have obtained lump sum amounts of security spending, but the DPS has refused to release expense details.

More here.

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