In this case, Public Citizen represented sixteen members of Congress who sought to compel the Secretary of the Department of Commerce to disclose certain data from the 2000 Census that the Department had adjusted to correct an under-count of the population. The case presented the question whether a statute known as the “Seven Member Rule” permits members of the Committee on Government Reform of the United States House of Representatives to compel a federal agency to disclose information. The district court ruled in our favor and ordered disclosure.
The government appealed. On appeal, the case was argued together with a Freedom of Information Act case in which the plaintiffs sought the same data. The appellate court ruled in favor of the Plaintiff in the FOIA case. The court held that the Members’ case was then moot and vacated the district court decision.