Last Friday, the White House released a new batch of visitor logs covering last October, fulfilling a pledge they made last month. Over here at the Sunlight Labs, we took the logs and added them to the handy online, searchable database we created last month, so that you can see for yourself who is coming to the White House and why.
This is the first full month that has been release by the administration and adds almost 100,000 new records for October. As we mentioned back in January, this is a positive step by the Obama administration, and we are happy to see that they are committed to releasing this data in a timely basis.
We still don’t know how many records are being withheld, and for what purposes. It would be nice for the White House to release at least a number, and ultimately a justification (read: national security) for why those names have been redacted. None the less, this is still part of a much larger, unprecedented level of transparency on behalf of the administration.
One of the other problems with the White House visitor logs is that there is no real accurate way to ensure that if you see a “Samuel L. Jackson” in the logs, it’s actually the actor. It could just be another Sam. That’s why we caution you, when you are reading through the records and doing your own independent research not to jump to conclusions. Otherwise, happy hunting!