Obama blocks list of visitors to White House


Bill Dedman
MSNBC
June 16, 2009

The Obama administration is fighting to block access to names of visitors to the White House, taking up the Bush administration argument that a president doesn’t have to reveal who comes calling to influence policy decisions.

[efoods]Despite President Barack Obama’s pledge to introduce a new era of transparency to Washington, and despite two rulings by a federal judge that the records are public, the Secret Service has denied msnbc.com’s request for the names of all White House visitors from Jan. 20 to the present. It also denied a narrower request by the nonpartisan watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, which sought logs of visits by executives of coal companies.

CREW says it will file a lawsuit Tuesday against the Department of Homeland Security, which oversees the Secret Service. (Updated: Here’s a copy of CREW’s complaint.)

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