Published: Tue, July 18, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Government watchdog to release Mar-a-Lago visitor log

Government watchdog to release Mar-a-Lago visitor log

Since becoming president, Donald Trump has spent some 25 days at his Florida resort, according to a New York Times tally.

In April, CREW, along with the National Security Archive and Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, sued the Trump administration for access to visitor records at the White House, Trump Tower, and Mar-a-Lago, amid increasing concerns over the White House's silence on whether it would make such documents public. However, a federal court in NY has ordered the DHS to release Mar-a-Lago's records. DHS claims it has no records for visitors to Trump Tower, and litigation concerning the White House guest list is still ongoing.

Trump retreated to his Mar-a-Lago resort for seven of his first 14 weekends in office, entertaining foreign heads of state such as Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and golfing with undisclosed partners - an activity aides rarely confirm despite requests from White House reporters to know when he golfs and who joins him on the course.

The court has asked for "records of presidential visitors", but it is not yet clear how broadly that is defined. Trump earned $37.2 million from Mar-a-Lago last year, according to his most recent financial disclosure form - a almost 25 percent increase from the previous year. As a part of the decision, visitor logs at the White House are now set to be kept secret until at least five years after President Trump leaves office.

The visitor logs are expected to be delivered to the group by September 8, they said. However, the pending lawsuit could change that.

A court in NY has asked to make public the list of visitors of Donald Trump at his residence in Mar-a-Lago in Florida, according to a court decision made public Monday. But in a Republican-controlled Congress, it's not likely to go anywhere.

CREW brought lawsuits against the Obama administration for similar reasons, and the White House logs became public in September 2009.

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