Washington DC: U.S. President Joe Biden has rejected former President Donald Trump’s executive privilege claims and ordered White House visitor logs to be released to the panel investigating the deadly Jan. 6, 2021 attack, according to a letter released on Wednesday.
In a letter to the National Archives, Biden’s White House counsel granted congressional investigators access to the data given the urgency of their work probing Trump supporters’ violent siege at the U.S. Capitol last year, and ordered the agency to turn over the logs within 15 days.
“The President has determined that an assertion of executive privilege is not in the best interests of the United States, and therefore is not justified, as to these records and portions of records,” Biden counsel Dana Remus wrote in the letter dated Feb. 15.
Biden, a Democrat, last year also rejected Trump’s bid to block the U.S. House of Representatives Jan. 6 committee from accessing batches of documents from the former president’s time at the White House. Federal courts also rejected Trump’s lawsuit seeking to withhold the records.
Remus in the letter said the logs of those who visited the White House before Trump left on Jan. 20, 2021, should be handed over quickly “in light of the urgency” of the committee’s work and Congress’ “compelling need.”
“Constitutional protections of executive privilege should not be used to shield, from Congress or the public, information that reflects a clear and apparent effort to subvert the Constitution itself,” Remus wrote.