Court Orders Release of Trump's 'Winter White House' Visitor Logs

Pauline Gross
July 17, 2017

In April, CREW, along with the National Security Archive and Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, sued the Trump administration for access to visitor records at the White House, Trump Tower, and Mar-a-Lago, amid increasing concerns over the White House's silence on whether it would make such documents public.

Government watchdog Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) will be making public visitor logs to President Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort starting this fall.

CREW said it will receive the logs by September 8.

CREW is suing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security under the Freedom of Information Act for the visitor logs from the Secret Service, a component of the DHS.

Spokespeople for the department and the agency declined to comment, citing the pending litigation.

"The Secret Service will complete its search for and processing of 'responsive records of presidential visitors at Mar-a-Lago, ' and produce any non-exempt responsive records, by September 8, 2017", the two-page ruling, issued by a U.S. District Court for the Southern District of NY judge, stated.

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When asked about the lack of thorough Mar-a-Lago visitor records, CREW spokesman Jordan Libowitz told Politico, "We don't know exactly what records they have". DHS claims to have no records of visitors at Trump Tower.

That practice, started by former President Barack Obama in 2009, has not been carried on by the Trump administration thus far.

The suit, filed in the Southern District of NY, cited multiple Freedom of Information Act requests that it alleged had been ignored by the Secret Service.

Mr Obama, who had campaigned saying that he would have one of the most transparent administrations in the history of the presidency, later yielded to the criticism and opened up the visitor logs to the public.

The White House argues the records are exempt from the law.

Other reports by GizPress

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