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Spicer defends White House policy on visitor logs

Tom Udall released the following statement Friday on the Trump administration's decision that it will not release White House visitor logs, breaking with the pro-transparency precedent set by the Obama administration.

"The Obama administration agreed to release the visitor logs in response to our lawsuits, and despite the Trump administration's worry over 'grave national security risks and concerns, ' only positives for the American people came out of them", Bookbinder said.

The Obama White House still elected to publish some 6 million records online, marking a departure from the Bush administration's more secretive policy.

U.S. President Donald Trump's administration said Friday that it would not disclose the names of people who have visited the White House, ending a policy of President Barack Obama's that was created to promote transparency.

Friday's announcement was harshly criticized by an array of government watchdog groups.

Trump's campaign also paid more than $28,000 to Bannon Strategic Advisors, the consulting firm of Steve Bannon, Trump's chief strategist, for what was categorized as administrative assistance.

With respect to visitor logs, Spicer said Trump was "following the same policy that every administration from the beginning of time (prior to Obama) has used".

A 2013 federal court ruling said visitor logs aren't subject to Freedom of Information Act requests.

The Obama administration released the logs but routinely scrubbed them of names they did not want made public.

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This is published unedited from the PTI feed. The White House did not say who would maintain custody of the records during his time in office. And it should. The White House is the people's house.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer on April 17 defended the administration's decision to no longer release the names of most visitors to the White House.

Three watchdog groups had filed a lawsuit Monday for the release of the visitor logs.

In fact, the Obama administration released the names of almost 6 million visitors during Obama's eight years in office, including the names of many lobbyists.

Romper reached out to the White House for comment on the measure, but did not hear back immediately.

The Secret Service conducts background checks and keeps a list of all visitors to the 18-acre White House grounds.

"Melania Trump bringing and unifying her family under one roof of the White House is a very smart move, and a very traditional move".

Trump's daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner are already in Washington, assisting the president in capacity of special assistant and senior adviser to the Republican businessman.

The US federal government does have an Office of Government Ethics, but its boss, Walter Shaub, knows as much under Trump as your average US citizen.

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