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Obama's First Hundred Minutes

Obama has been president a little over 24 hours, and already executive orders and policy pronouncements have come streaming out of his office. Initiatives announced today include:

-- A pay freeze for White House staffers who earn over $100,000 a year and new rules that ban former staffers from lobbying the administration for two full years after leaving their position [Source: Associated Press]

-- A directive to military prosecutors to seek a 120-day suspension of legal proceedings involving detainees at Guantanamo Bay [AP, via], as well as a yet unsigned draft executive order providing for the closure of Guantanamo within a year and commencement of a review on how to deal with the remaining prisoners. [Reuters]

-- A change in the presumptions applied to Freedom of Information Act requests in favor of disclosure of information, with the onus on government officials to justify withholding of information [MSNBC]

Finally, Obama received a favorable order of his own: the Secret Service will allow him to keep his BlackBerry despite concerns that it represents a legal and security risk. Obama is aware that any e-mails he sends may wind up on CNN -- and is apparently willing to accept the loss of privacy. In addition, Obama must also archive all of his messages to comply with applicable record-keeping requirements.

Posted by Carolyn Elefant on January 21, 2009 at 04:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)


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