Morning News Calls for Repeal of Executive Order 13233

February 11, 2007

Today’s Dallas Morning News ran an editorial entitled “Full Disclosure,” with a sub-heading “Mr. Bush, allow a complete archive at library,” that calls for the President to repeal Executive Order 13233, which gives former Presidents and their designees or families in perpetuity the right to assert executive privilege to limit access to their papers. The editorial notes that “[a]rchivists across the country have called upon SMU to reject the library unless the Bush order is rescinded” and that “the university’s own history department has expressed opposition to his policy.” (I posted the SMU historians’ statement on Thursday).

I can’t imagine that Bush will repeal the Order, but it’s nice to see the Morning News weigh in on this. Its editorial of several weeks ago endorsing the Library ignored the debate about the Bush Institute, so it’s a relief to see that the paper’s editors are now better apprised of the contours of the debate.


Former Head of Truman Library Points to Problems With System

February 11, 2007

Larry Hackman, writing in Friday’s Kansas City Star, argues that the Bush Library-Institute debate provides an opportunity for the consideration of “important underlying issues” about the Presidential libraries.  He is particularly concerned about the level of federal budget support for the libraries, the lack of coordination between the libraries, and the powerful role of the former Presidents and their foundations in shaping exhibits — all concerns that he says “are greatest for more recent libraries.”