Citing his cozy ties to Wall Street banks, a group dedicated to exposing corruption and corporate influence in Washington, D.C. has submitted an official Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for all correspondence between U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman and the 10 largest U.S. financial institutions.
The FOIA request demands access to or copies of emails and other written communications between Froman, the country’s top trade negotiator, and banks including JP Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, and Citigroup.
Froman is a former senior executive at Citigroup and received a “golden parachute” worth more than $4 million upon leaving the large financial institution to go into government.
Rootstrikers, the grassroots organization behind the FOIA request, has said that because corporate giveaways like the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) and TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) pose a threat to robust financial regulation in general—and the U.S. financial reforms implemented after the financial crisis in specific—”Americans deserve to know what Froman has been privately saying to these big banks.”
As Kurt Walters of Rootstrikers wrote in the request, dated Wednesday: “Disclosure of the requested information…is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations or activities of the government, based on the information privately communicated to the financial sector by Ambassador Froman and the possible influence of that sector on negotiations.”
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