Image via WikipediaIn a reversal of its previous position, the White House issued a press release on September 4th announcing that it will publish the names contained on visitors' logs to the White House on its Web site (www.whitehouse.gov).
Each month, records of visitors to the White House over the previous 90 to 120 days will be published. Names will still be excluded from disclosure for national security reasons or if the names are of a "necessarily confidential nature," such as a visiting prospective Supreme Court nominee. A watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), which had filed litigation in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia under the Freedom of Information Act [FOIA] (5 U.S.C. sec. 552) seeking the release of visitor logs, has agreed to withdraw its suit (See "TUOL" 6/16/09, 7/23/09), which resulted in CREW being thanked by the White House in the press release for its "participation" in the development of the revised White House policy that previously upheld the position of the Bush Administration that visitor logs were presidential papers not subject to disclosure under the FOIA.