OLYMPIA (AP) — The Washington state Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case on whether Gov. Chris Gregoire can claim “executive privilege” as a reason to withhold records from the public even though it is not listed as a specific exemption under state law. The high court will hear oral arguments in the case Thursday morning. Last year, a Thurston County Superior Court judge ruled that Gregoire could claim executive privilege. The Freedom Foundation, which originally sued Gregoire in April 2011 on the issue, appealed to the state Supreme Court.
The group argues that executive privilege isn’t a legitimate exemption and that the governor is using it to keep a broad range of documents secret.
It had sought records on a variety of subjects, including documents on the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement, medical marijuana and criminal pardons.