Friday, September 04, 2009

Whitehouse agrees to reveal visitor names

Until now, Obama had followed the Bush policy of keeping visitor logs secret. News organizations and watchdog groups had sought to make the records public to show who was influencing administration policy on health care, financial rules and other issues.

"We will achieve our goal of making this administration the most open and transparent administration in history," Obama said in a prepared statement. "Americans have a right to know whose voices are being heard."

The new policy would begin in mid-September. Electronic visitor logs maintained by the Secret Service would be released three to four months after visits are made. The disclosure would include who set up the meeting, where it was held and for how long. Specific requests for visits before Sept. 15 would be dealt with individually.