Dems introduce bill requiring disclosure of guest logs from White House, Trump properties

Dems introduce bill requiring disclosure of guest logs from White House, Trump properties
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Democrats in the House and Senate on Tuesday introduced a bill mandating the publication of visitor logs at the White House and other personal properties where President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff blasts Trump for making 'false claims' about Russia intel: 'You've betrayed America. Again.' Poll: Sanders leads 2020 Democratic field with 28 percent, followed by Warren and Biden More than 6 in 10 expect Trump to be reelected: poll MORE conducts business.

Sen. Tom UdallThomas (Tom) Stewart UdallOvernight Energy: EPA moves to limit financial pressure on 'forever chemical' manufacturers | California sues Trump over water order| Buttigieg expands on climate plan Now is our chance to turn the tide on ocean plastic pollution Buttigieg expands on climate plan with new proposals MORE (D-N.M.) and Rep. Mike QuigleyMichael (Mike) Bruce QuigleyHillicon Valley: Officials worry about Nevada caucus technology after Iowa | Pelosi joins pressure campaign on Huawei | Workers at Kickstarter vote to unionize | Bezos launches B climate initiative The Hill's Campaign Report: Bloomberg to face off with rivals at Nevada debate Tech for Nevada caucuses under scrutiny after Iowa debacle MORE (D-Ill.), co-founder and co-chair of the Congressional Transparency Caucus, respectively, introduced the Making Access Records Available to Lead American Government Openness (Mar-A-Lago) Act, a nod to Trump's private Mar-a-Lago club in Florida. The legislation was first introduced in the previous congressional term.

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“No one should have greater access to or influence over the president or the administration just because they are wealthy, well-connected, or a regular at one of the president’s private clubs,” Udall said in a statement. “The administration’s refusal to disclose White House visitor logs – and the president’s insistence on conducting official business out of his private business properties – have created an environment where people seeking to influence the administration can access officials at the highest levels of government without public scrutiny.” 

“The power of the presidency comes with a responsibility to provide the public with the records of those trying to influence our democracy. The MAR-A-LAGO Act is about upholding the integrity of the Oval Office and, based on this president’s track record, we know that transparency is not a priority of his, making public access to these visitor logs an absolute necessity,” Quigley added. 

Democratic Sens. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseDemocratic senators ask DOJ watchdog to expand Giuliani probe Democrats pan Trump's budget proposal as 'dead on arrival' Trump unveils .8 trillion budget that backtracks on deal with Congress MORE (R.I.), Tom CarperThomas (Tom) Richard CarperWhere do we go from here? Conservation can show the way Overnight Energy: EPA to regulate 'forever chemicals' in drinking water | Trump budget calls for slashing funds for climate science centers | House Dems urge banks not to fund drilling in Arctic refuge EPA will regulate 'forever chemicals' in drinking water MORE (Del.), Martin HeinrichMartin Trevor HeinrichSenate report says Obama officials were 'not well-postured' to respond to Russian hacking Democratic senators ask banks to prohibit funding Arctic drilling Senate drama surrounding Trump trial starts to fizzle MORE (N.M.), Jack ReedJohn (Jack) Francis ReedLawmakers wary as US on cusp of initial deal with Taliban Pavlich: The Senate defends its integrity Five Senate Democrats make impeachment case in Spanish MORE (R.I.), Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenRussian interference reports rock Capitol Hill McSally unveils bill to lower drug prices amid tough campaign Graham: Trump has 'all the legal authority in the world' to pardon Stone MORE (Ore.) and Mazie HironoMazie Keiko HironoDemocratic senators ask DOJ watchdog to expand Giuliani probe Senate Dems blast Barr for 'clear violation' of duty in Stone case, urge him to resign What the impeachment vote looked like from inside the chamber MORE (Hawaii) are all co-sponsoring the legislation.

Udall and Quigley said the legislation is in response to the Trump administration’s refusal to extend policies established under former President Obama to disclose White House visitor logs 90 to 120 days after they were made. Their bill would require publication of visitor logs 90 days after their creation.

Trump has been known to conduct domestic and foreign negotiations at his properties across the country, particularly at his Mar-a-Lago club. He regularly golfs with Senate allies and has hosted foreign leaders, such as Chinese President Xi Jinping, at his properties to conduct negotiations on trade and other issues. 

“President Trump has also taken the unusual and potentially dangerous step of conducting official business in the plain view of guests at his high-priced Mar-A-Lago club. The MAR-A-LAGO Act requires the disclosure of visitors to the club and to other Trump Organization properties to make certain there is transparency about who has unprecedented access to President Trump at these locations,” Udall and Quigley said.

The two Democrats also referenced a recent report from Mother Jones saying the founder of a chain of Florida spas where New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft allegedly solicited a prostitute was advertising access to the president and others at Mar-a-Lago.