July 29, 2005
Status of Review of Judge John Roberts Materials At the Reagan Library
Washington, DC. . . The Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley, California is reviewing previously unprocessed materials from the John G. Roberts Files, 1982-1986 and from the White House Office of Records Management: Subject File. Judge Roberts was the Associate Counsel to the President during the Reagan Administration. Approximately 50,000 pages of material have been located.
The Reagan Library currently has available for research 4,864 pages of material from the Robert’s files. This material was opened in response to previous FOIA requests. Included is correspondence between Roberts and Fred Fielding, Counsel to the President, and background information relating to specific topics such as Civil Rights, busing, the Environmental Protection Agency, and legislative and line item vetoes.
The Reagan Library has also identified and opened approximately 500 pages of White House Office of Records Management files, including records that pertain to the Department of Justice, the Judicial Branch, immigration and public relations.
The requirements for review and release of Presidential records is established by the Presidential Records Act of 1978 and Executive Order 13233. This process is very labor-intensive and time-consuming and requires that National Archives staff conduct a page by page, word for word review of all records in order to protect sensitive information such as national security, personal privacy and law enforcement. Following the National Archives review, by law, both the former and the incumbent Presidents must have an opportunity to review all of the records, in order to consider if any of them may be subject to a constitutionally-based privilege.
Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein said, "We are committed to releasing this material as soon as possible, given the challenges of the review process. Under normal circumstances, a typical review of this nature takes three to four months. With additional resources that we have dedicated, we hope to release this material by mid August".
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For more information, the press should contact the National Archives Public Affairs Staff at 202-501-5526.