Court: White House visitor logs off limits

Kia Farhang

A federal appeals court ruled Friday that visitor logs for the president and most of his staff aren't subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act.

The 3-0 ruling overturns a lower court's decision in a case where a conservative group had used FOIA to request visitor logs from President Obama's first seven months in office, USA Today reported. The White House began voluntarily releasing visitor logs in September 2009.

A judge writing for the panel said in his opinion that Congress made it clear they didn't want FOIA to grant access to the president's calendar when they amended the law in 1974. Forcing FOIA to cover White House visitor logs would essentially make a president's schedule known after the fact, the judge wrote.

Judicial Watch, the group pushing for the records' disclosure, said it was considering appealing the ruling, the Associated Press reported.