Trump sued for not releasing White House visitor logs

Three organizations are suing the Trump administration for not making public the logs that show who is visiting the White House.

The National Security Archive, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), and the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University have all filed a suit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) calling for the release of the logs.

The suit has formally been filed against the Department of Homeland Security, as the organizations say the Secret Service has not provided the log information despite FOIA requests.

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“We hoped that the Trump administration would follow the precedent of the Obama administration and continue to release visitor logs, but unfortunately they have not,” CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said in a statement.

“Given the many issues we have already seen in this White House with conflicts of interest, outside influence, and potential ethics violations, transparency is more important than ever, so we had no choice but to sue.”

The three groups are asking not only for the records of who is visiting the White House, but for records that show who is meeting the president at his private properties in New York and Florida.

President Trump has frequently met with world leaders at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, most recently when he conferred with Chinese President Xi Jinping last week.

The Obama administration said in September 2009 that it would begin releasing the logs after CREW filed multiple lawsuits, the organization said.

“President Obama routinely released the data we're seeking with no damage to presidential privilege, and this information is central to the Secret Service mission and thus clearly agency records subject to FOIA,” Tom Blanton, the director of the National Security Archive, said in a statement.

Another employee of the National Security Archive said it filed the first FOIA related to Trump on Jan. 23.