President Obama offered the White House visitor logs as a historic milestone in transparency, but his spokesman now says the logs cannot be used for "verifying" the identity of White House visitors.
The Ann Romney-Hilary Rosen controversy has led to White House Press Secretary Jay Carney casting doubt on the reliability and use of the visitor logs in revealing who visits the White House.
"The point I was making yesterday is that often when we get inquiries about the visitor list, the WAVES list, just based on names, it turns out that people with common names appear . . . sometimes there are other people with the same names," Carney told reporters today. "So all I was simply saying is that at that point, we had no way of verifying that this was one person."
Carney was explaining why he responded, "I know three, personally, women named Hilary Rosen. So I'm not sure that those represent the person we're talking about necessarily," when he was asked about Rosen's many trips to the White House. (Obama was exposed to embarrassment when Rosen, a Democratic strategist and familiar figure in the White House, said that Ann Romney had "never worked a day in her life.")
If the White House visitor logs can't be used for "verifying" the identity of White House visitors, are the logs "still providing the American people with an unprecedented amount of information about their government" as promised?