A US District Court judge has ruled that the administration of President Barack Obama must disclose records for the White House visitor logs. If the White House doesn’t want to disclose logs, the judge said the White House must “assert specific FOIA exemptions for all records it seeks to withhold.”
The watchdog group Judicial Watch had filed a lawsuit seeking records of visitor logs from January 20, 2009 to August 10, 2009.
Obama appointed the judge who issued the ruling.
This isn’t the only beef supporters of the Freedom of Information Act have with the Obama administration over government transparency. The US Report published an article in early August about the Dept. of Homeland Security’s refusal to comply with requests from Prince William County (Va.)
The county wanted to know what DHS did with at least 3,000 illegal aliens the county turned over to DHS. One of those aliens is charged with a criminal act—allegedly running down a nun while he was driving drunk. The county, like Judicial Watch, has filed a lawsuit. It is not known at this point how many other aliens released have committed crimes.
Little coverage has been given to any of this, despite stories surfacing in 2010 about lack of transparency from the Obama administration. Even the left of center Los Angeles Times acknowledged Obama’s resistance to sunshine in government in a story published after the Associated Press conducted a study. The newspaper said, “The White House Democratic administration of Barack Obama, who denounced his presidential predecessor George W. Bush as the most secretive in history, is now denying more Freedom of Information Act requests than the Republican did.”
Democrats in Congress have complained about transparency in hearings, but they have done nothing to advance it.
As of the date of the L.A. Times story, the Obama administration had stymied FOIA requests more than twice as much as Bush, ’43 did in a year.
It will be interesting to see the Obama visitor logs, to say the least.
The Washington Examiner said former labor leader, the SEIU’s Andy Stern, had visited the White House 53 times as of February, 2011. Stern was Obama’s biggest funder, with $28 million contributed to the president’s first campaign.
Prince William County suits against DHS… (The US Report)
US District Court Judge to Obama administration: White House visitor logs public (National Conservative Examiner)
(Commentary by Kay B. Day/august 18, 2011)
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