I'll level with you and pretend that you have the "right" to open government. It doesn't appear in the Bill of Rights or any other subsequent amendment, so it's not a right, but I'll play along for the sake of being able to have an argument in the first place.
When Four Names Allala and her merry band of morons requested every word written by Joyce Wilson and the progressives on council from the beginning of time, they were within their "right" to do so. Where the problem began is how they went about assessing those emails and the public statements they made about what they *thought* was in them.
The outcome of what I'm sure is a million words of email correspondence was two emails where Joyce Wilson told the painful truth about certain members of the public and at least one member of city council (even if she wasn't referring to him at all). That didn't stop Four Names Allala insinuating that she had multiple smoking guns on multiple people and that indictments were to be quickly following. The El Paso press blindly took Four Names at her word and blasted to the public scary stories of insider deal cutting and all around malfeasance on the part of everyone not named Emma Acosta, Eddie Holguin or Carl Robinson at city hall. Unfortunately all the stories were untrue and the El Paso media as a whole, or individually, has yet to correct the record and apologize for their ethical lapse.
What is the real result of Four Names' publicity stunt? Less email being sent to, and between, city staff, city council members and the public. The whole "Chuco Leaks" effort has had a chilling effect on exchanges among, and with, city hall folks - at least in the way of trackable digital communication.
People I talk to are deathly afraid of sending emails to their representative or to city staff fearing that Four Names and friends will makes something of it that it is not. Even the friends of Allala on council (Holguin, Acosta and Robinson) have reduced their communication by email hoping to avoid their political enemies making something out of nothing. At this point Debbie Nathan is rabidly hunting down the identities of people who email the city with their concerns of matters such as confusing petitions. When private citizens voicing concerns to city representatives becomes a matter of risking your reputation - the process has taken a step backward, not forward.
City council members, city staff and the public have always had legal alternatives to conversing over easily searchable and reportable avenues such as email. The good ol' fashioned face to face conversation isn't subject to Open Records Requests (ORR). They become especially less reportable when they take place off site in a public place.
Guess where all those conversations that used to take place over email have gone? If you guessed "to lunch at Leo's," mark yourself a point on the board. Allala's grand failure has driven city reps and staff into the dark away from the prying eyes of the digital age. The net result of Allala's open government push is more closed government. Nice job!
And just a word for what Nathan is looking for. Somebody spent a lot of time this weekend trying to convince me that the email she's looking to identify are from Woody Hunt and Paul Foster. They claim that Nathan thinks those two billionaires cut the deal with Wilson on her personal email address. I hope to God that Nathan is just spiteful toward people who don't share her political views and not stupid enough to think Hunt and Foster would cut deals with officials through unofficial means. Let me explain.
Paul Foster, Woody Hunt and Josh Hunt deal with government on every level, every single day. Hunt builds military housing and is a private developer and property owner - lots of government interaction there. Paul Foster's refineries and other business ventures are heavily regulated by the government. These men know better than to communicate anything of importance offline and outside the official channels. Anything promised from a personal email account by a public official might as well have never been offered at all - it's not actionable.
There's no way on God's green earth that the Fosters or the Hunts would make a deal over personal email. They were looking for a legally binding deal that will be fought out in court if the city doesn't live up to its side of the deal. Making deals on personal emails with city council and city officials doesn't help you in court - these men knows this. They didn't earn the money they earned by being stupid.
Nathan needs to realize that she's going to end up hurting private citizens with no connection to the ballpark if she gets what she wants. I hope that is her goal, because it's a nasty thing to do to someone on accident.