WH Visitor Logs Released. . .With A Catch
WH Visitor Logs Released. . .With A Catch
Yesterday, the Biden Administration released the White House visitor logs for January. Ah, how the MSM applauded the move. After all, Orange Man Bad had refused to release the logs, breaking with tradition that was. . .wait for it. . .started in the Obama Administration. So it shouldn’t come as any surprise that Biden followed suit. After all, we’ve watched him try to be either Obama or FDR since he took office. But what, exactly, are we getting with these releases and should the public be satisfied? The short answer to the latter is a resounding “NO!”.
The release yesterday amounted to approximately 400 records spanning dates from January 20th to the end of the month. Of those, a whopping seven–SEVEN–met with Biden himself. Six of those met with him on one day. Hmm, makes you wonder what he was doing the rest of the month that kept him soooo busy he couldn’t see anyone from the outside.
What’s interesting is the logs for Vice-President Harris’ residence have not yet been promulgated. But rest assured, once they are, they will be released to the public.
My question is simple: why is it taking longer to pull those records together than it is the White House? Surely, Harris has fewer people coming to visit at her residence than are coming to the WH, especially in this day and age of Covid idiocy. Where’s the transparency?
This release was made in accordance with the reinstated policy to voluntarily disclose White House visitor logs,” the White House said. “These logs give the public a look into the visitors entering and exiting the White House campus for appointments, tours, and official business — making good on President Biden’s commitment to restore integrity, transparency, and trust in government.”
Sounds really good, doesn’t it. But there’s a catch. Admit it. You knew there had to be one.
According to Bloomberg:
A White House official said it would not release the names of participants in virtual meetings, noting that past administrations did not publish phone logs.”
So, “virtual meetings” are now being given the same weight as phone logs. In a time when the WH, the CDC and other agencies proclaimed in-person meetings couldn’t be safely held, they are hiding what Zoom-ish meetings took place and who participated. Anyone want to take bets they continue to use this loophole to hide contacts from the public?
And why isn’t the media raising hell about it?
Oh, wait, I know. The media is little more than the propaganda arm of the WH these days.
But there are even more exceptions. I know it surprises you (not).
The Biden White House has carved out a handful of exceptions to its policy that mirror those set by Obama’s staff, restricting the release of records that it says would threaten national security, as well as those related to “purely personal” guests of the first and second families.
The White House is also adopting the Obama rule of withholding records related to “a small group of particularly sensitive meetings,” such as the visits of potential Supreme Court nominees. The administration said it will disclose how many records have been withheld for that reason and release them once they are no longer sensitive.”
Now, even though my idea of what national security means probably differs a great deal from those sitting in the WH these days, I expected that exception. But why keep the “purely personal” guests secret? Who knows? Maybe Biden wants to be a ladies man like JFK. He certainly wants to be the “great savior” like FDR and the “history maker” like Obama. Shudder.
And if we are supposed to have a transparent Administration, why can’t we know who he is considering for the Supreme Court? More to the point, why isn’t the media demanding to know so they can do their due diligence and investigate the potential nominee, that nominee’s background and legal experience and expertise?
For all the applauding of from the media about how wonderful this very limited release of information is, most overlook the fact the release of these logs is a relatively new development. Both Bill Clinton and George Bush refused to make the records public. It took years of pressure and even lawsuits from various organizations before the Obama Administration agreed to release the visitor logs. This occurred near the end of his first year in office. So even St. Barack fought the release of these documents.
But boy did the media cry “foul!” when Trump rescinded the policy once he took office.
But golly gee whiz, they are so excited now because Biden’s going to release the records and “give the public a look into the visitors entering and exiting the White House campus for appointments, tours, and official business.” Except how in the world are we getting a look into the visitors when we don’t get to know who is taking part in virtual meetings–especially if there is a concern about the influence of special interest groups? Or does the current Administration believe these special interest groups don’t know how to use Zoom or its equivalent?
What about the “personal visitors”? If we get to know the names of tourists visiting the White House, the “people’s House” as Biden calls it, don’t we have the right to know who is visiting the current tenets of that house?
And isn’t it interesting that it seems the one member of the First Family meeting with special interest groups isn’t POTUS but his wife?
First lady Jill Biden, a longtime teacher, hosted the leaders of the country’s major teachers’ unions on her husband’s first full day in office, January 21. American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and National Education Association President Becky Pringle were at the White House along with Miguel Cardona, then the nominee for Education secretary and his wife Marissa, for a live virtual event to honor teach”
Seems like she’s visited with as many , if not more, people than Biden has. If that doesn’t scare you, it probably ought to.
In the meantime, I’m still waiting for real transparency from the Biden White House. I figure we’ll get it about the same time we get real efforts to work with anyone who doesn’t have a (D) after their name.
Welcome, Instapundit Readers!