Executive Orders and Whitehouse.gov

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The launch of the new WhiteHouse.gov web site created a flood of blog posts that simply sought to say, “cool.” A lot of other people have given some great critiques, revealing insights into the code, and summaries. A few questions and comments, mostly relating to executive orders and other researchable information, I’d like to make are below:

1) What happened to Bush’s White House web site? Currently, there is no site housing President Bush’s executive orders, proclamations, and other historically important material. If you do a Google search for, say, Executive Order 13233 (an order repealed by Obama) you get a White House web page that is now re-routed to the front page because there is no page for these Bush Executive Orders. Wouldn’t it be cool if the WhiteHouse.gov site provided links to all previous Executive Orders (or at least linked to their pages at Archives.gov)?

2) Following on that last question: Executive Orders often mention, or repeal, previous Executive Orders. Why not link to that previously mentioned Executive Order? Or provide other links to help make the information deeper for those trying to digest it.

This is essentially the same as asking for legislation posted online to reference through linking the parts of the U.S. Code that would be affected by passage. Except here, I believe, it would be a lot easier. Simply posting the historical record of Executive Orders and linking them together in the text would make Presidential orders and directives much easier to digest. Archives.gov already does this (an example page) to some degree. At the very least the Executive Orders page should provide a link to the Archives for further reference.

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  • Heather West

    They actually have archived Bush’s WhiteHouse.gov:
    http://www.georgewbushlibrary.gov/white-house/

    It’s linked from Bush’s library page at Arghives.gov (not the most logical place, admittedly):
    http://www.archives.gov/presidential-libraries/visit/bushgw.html

    And as for suggestion 2, thats a fantastic idea and would make these kinds of documents much more accessible.

  • Thanks Heather. Didn’t see that.

  • Richard Akerman

    I think linking to the previous Executive Orders is a really good idea. They have a bit of a challenge in deciding about linking though – the orders reference a ton of other legal documents – should they all be linked? Rather than cluttering up the text of the order, should there be links at the bottom of the EO?