Missing White House Documents


A story on Politico by Josh Gerstein, “The White House’s Missing Documents,” notes that presidential directives, memos, proclamations, etc. are not consistently appearing on the White House website.  There is a tone in the article of there being a selective use of transparency.  But at a lunch with a close observer of the White House operations, the reality may be that this is less of a problem of transparency and more of a problem of the lack of a consistent process for handling presidential documents.  If White House staff  do an end-run around the President’s Staff Secretary, or the Staff Secretary does not have a routinized process, then whatever the President signs may not afterwards get into the hands of all the right people for subsequent distribution (e.g., Federal Register, White House Web Master, Cabinet Secretary, Press Office, etc.).


This is more likely a symptom of the shakeout of a new White House staff than it is a sympton of nefarious behavior.

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