Mar-a-Lago Visitor Logs To Become Public, If They Exist


The visitor logs to President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort will be released by an ethics watchdog group starting this fall.

Since becoming president, Trump has visited the Palm Beach resort more than 20 times, using the grounds to conduct high-level meetings with world leaders such as Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

The group said that it will receive the records by September 8-though there has been some ambiguity over what logs exist in the first place-and then make them available for public review.

CREW sued the Obama White House for the same records, resulting in the administration releasing that information on an ongoing basis beginning in 2009.

Spokespeople for the department and the agency declined to comment, citing the pending litigation.

The federal judge overseeing the case ordered late last week that the administration "complete its search for and processing of responsive 'records of presidential visitors at Mar-a-Lago, ' and produce any non-exempt responsive records" by September 8, according to court documents.

The lawsuit, filed in January in the Southern District of NY, alleges Trump is violating the Constitution's emoluments clause whenever foreign entities lease Trump real estate or pay to stay at the Trump Hotel in Washington, D.C.

"The public deserves to know who is coming to meet with the president and his staff", CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said in their statement. Crew also sued the Obama administration for access to those records. The Trump administration, however, claimed to have no records of visitors at Trump Tower.

The court has asked for "records of presidential visitors", but it is not yet clear how broadly that is defined.

The White House argues the records are exempt from the law.