Litigation leading to release of visitor logs from Mar-a-Lago
18 July, 2017, 03:37 | Author: Valerie Burke
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, known as CREW, says DHS has until September 8 to hand over the Mar-a-Lago visitor logs.
Citizens for Responsible Ethics in Washington (CREW) announced the DHS has agreed to release Mar-a-Lago visitor records by September 8, at which point the watchdog group will make the records public. The organizations sought the release of visitor logs from the White House, Trump Tower, and Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.
The White House has dismissed the criticism, saying that Mr Shaub was promoting himself and had failed to do his job properly.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) announced Monday that the judge had ruled the Secret Service must turn over the records as part of an ongoing suit the group brought against the Department of Homeland Security earlier this year. Trump earned $37.2 million from Mar-a-Lago last year, according to his most recent financial disclosure form - a almost 25 percent increase from the previous year.
"We are pleased that, following this case, this information will become public for meetings in their private homes, but it must also be public meetings at the White House".
Walter Shaub told the New York Times that the Trump administration has ignored long-established guidelines, and that the flouting of ethics rules at home makes it hard for the U.S. to tackle corruption overseas.
CREW sued the Obama White House for access to visitor logs. His predecessor, Barack Obama, initially claimed that the logs were presidential information, so they were either privileged or generally off-limits to the public.
But, while the Obama administration did release those records, critics noted that they weren't as useful as they could have been. Every month, they voluntarily posted online the name of visitors, as well as the dates and times they entered and left the White House compound.
White House spokesman Sean Spicer told reporters at the time no classified information was revealed at the table. According to White House communications director Michael Dubke, the decision was made because of "the grave national security risks and privacy concerns of the hundreds of thousands of visitors annually".
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