First Presidential Records Released Under New Obama Excutive Order

On April 13, 245,763 pages of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush Presidential records were opened for research at their respective libraries. These records were still pending at the end of the George W. Bush administration on January 20, 2009. They were released in accordance with the Presidential Records Act and the new Executive Order 13489, addressing presidential records, which was signed by President Obama on January 21, 2009.

In making the announcement, Acting Archivist of the United States Adrienne Thomas said, “I am delighted that the Obama administration has cleared the way to open these Presidential records. This action allows the American people to view historical records relating to the Presidency and judge for themselves the actions of federal officials.”

The Ronald Reagan library opened 244,966 pages of records processed in response to hundreds of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests. These records include the Presidential Briefing Papers collection, Office of Speechwriting research material, and approximately 13,000 pages of declassified records on numerous foreign policy topics. To date, more than ten million pages of Presidential records have been processed at the Reagan library.

The George H. W. Bush library opened 797 pages of records that deal with Saudi Arabia. To date, more than six million pages of Presidential records have been processed at the Bush library.

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