Biden Crushes Trump’s Privilege Claim On White House Visitor Logs

Biden Crushes Trump’s Privilege Claim On White House Visitor Logs

President Joe Biden

President Joe Biden’s administration has ordered the National Archives to hand over former President Donald Trump’s White House visitor logs to the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol. Biden’s decision is the latest blow to Trump’s efforts to cower behind dubious claims of executive privilege as congressional investigators zero in on his role in the deadly Capitol insurrection.

In a letter dated Tuesday to United States Archivist David Ferriero that was first reported by The New York Times on Wednesday, White House Counsel Dana Remus wrote that Biden “has determined that an assertion of executive privilege is not in the best interests of the United States, and therefore is not justified, as to these records and portions of records.”

Trump famously kept his visitor logs a secret, declaring in 2017 that “the grave national security risks and privacy concerns of the hundreds of thousands of visitors annually” preclude their public release.

Biden, like Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama, meanwhile, voluntarily releases his records every month.

Thus, “the majority of the entries over which the former President has asserted executive privilege would be publicly released under current policy. As practice under that policy demonstrates, preserving the confidentiality of this type of record generally is not necessary to protect long-term institutional interests of the Executive Branch,” Remus said.

Congress “has a compelling need in service of its legislative functions to understand the circumstances that led to . . . the most serious attack on the operations of the Federal Government since the Civil War. . . . Constitutional protections of executive privilege should not be used to shield, from Congress or the public, information that reflects a clear and apparent effort to subvert the Constitution itself,” she wrote.

Due to the time-sensitive nature of the January 6 probe, Remus continued, Biden “further instructs you to provide those pages 15 days after your notification to the former President, unless prohibited by court order. If the 15-day period expires on a weekend or holiday, you should provide the records to the Select Committee on the next business day.”

Trump has not indicated whether or not he will fight the order in court. Based upon his losing track record so far, however, filing an appeal would likely serve as nothing more than a futile stalling tactic.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet


Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Narcissist Trump Disdained The Wounded And Admired The War Criminal

Former President Donald Trump, Gen. Mark Milley and former Vice President Mike Pence

We’ve long known who Donald Trump is: narcissistic, impressed with authoritarian displays, contemptuous of anyone he sees as low status, a man for whom the highest principle is his own self-interest. It’s still shocking to read new accounts of the moments where he’s most willing to come out and show all that, to not even pretend to be anything but what he is—and holy crap, does The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg have the goods in his new profile of outgoing Joint Chiefs of Staff Chair Mark Milley, which focuses on Milley’s efforts to protect the military as a nonpartisan institution under Trump.

Keep reading...Show less
Ben Wikler

Ben Wikler

White House

From Alabama Republicans' blatantly discriminatory congressional map, to the Wisconsin GOP's ousting of a the states' top election official and attempt to impeach a liberal Supreme Court justice, to North Carolina's decision to allow the majority-Republican legislature to appoint state and local election board members, News from the States reports these anti-democratic moves have all recently "generated national headlines" and stoked fears ahead of the 2024 presidential election.

Keep reading...Show less
{{ }}