Political roundup: Police body cams, private email accounts spark debates about transparency

Apr 14, 2017


This week’s political roundup examines two instances of government trying to restrict access to information.

Advocates say body cameras like this one can prevent police abuses. But some say they also violate individuals' privacy.
Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/pennstatelive/32513699213

Ken Sikkema, Senior Policy Fellow at Public Sector Consultants and former Republican Majority Leader in the state Senate, and Darci McConnell, president & CEO of McConnell Communications, which consults for state Democratic causes and clients, joined Stateside to explain the issues.

First up, there’s a bill to exempt audio or video from body cameras worn by law enforcement from access by the public.


Many police-reform advocates have pushed for body cams as a way to prevent abuses. At the same time, there’s been concern about the cost of keeping body cam recordings on file, departments being inundated with requests for access to those recordings, and that those recordings might be used out of context.


Secondly, the left-leaning group Progress Michigan has filed a lawsuit to find out how often Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette and his aides used private e-mail accounts to discuss public business.

The Republican attorney general refused a request for private e-mails, saying the messages don’t exist. But, Progress Michigan says it has two dozen such messages in hand that it acquired through other channels.

Listen to the full interview above for more.

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