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Judges Show Skepticism in Federal Secrecy Cases

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Judges Show Skepticism in Federal Secrecy Cases

Law

Judges Show Skepticism in Federal Secrecy Cases

Judges Show Skepticism in Federal Secrecy Cases

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/6140854/6140855" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Since late July, judges in three separate federal cases have ruled against the government's state secrets motions, refusing to kill a lawsuit based on government statements that documents in the case would threaten national security if publicized.

The three recent rulings preserved dozens of lawsuits on the NSA's warrantless wiretapping. A federal judge in Oregon has been reluctant to return one such document to the government for protective custody.

Lawyers involved in similar cases against the government say they hope — but don't know for sure — that judges are becoming more skeptical about the government's use of the state secrets privilege.