September 4, 2009 / by emptywheel


Obama to (Finally) Fulfill One of His Promises

By agreeing to release logs of visitors to the White House.

The President has decided to increase governmental transparency by implementing a voluntary disclosure policy governing White House visitor access records. The White House will release, on a monthly basis, all previously unreleased WAVES and ACR access records that are 90 to 120 days old. For example, records created in January 2010 will be released at the end of April 2010. The short time lag will allow the White House to continue to conduct business, while still providing the American people with an unprecedented amount of information about their government. No previous White House has ever adopted such a policy.

The voluntary disclosure policy will apply to records created after September 15, 2009, and the first release of records (covering the month of September) will occur at the end of the year, on or about December 31, 2009.

A couple of points on this (and forgive me for being churlish.

First, they’re announcing this as they prepare to screw progressives on health care. If this is meant to be a sop, I’m not buying it).

Second, this is a classic Greg Craig agreement: a voluntary agreement that can be overturned at the whim of the Executive. So while it’s nice and all, it doesn’t cede on Executive Power in the least.

And finally, note that this is just going forward, not historical. So we don’t get a final list of all the lobbyists who have visited the White House when Progressives were still being shut out.

Copyright © 2009 emptywheel. All rights reserved.
Originally Posted @