Congressman Eliot Engel, a leading member on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, authored a letter to President Trump signed by over 3 dozen of his House colleagues, urging the President to reopen the White House Visitors Office and resume giving tours.
“I’m incredibly disappointed that the White House is refusing to offer tours to the public. Millions of visitors come to the White House each year, including hundreds from my district. We’re now into our fourth week of President Trump’s administration and Congressional offices still have not been given any indication of when the White House will reopen to visitors,” Congressman Engel said. “I sincerely hope that the President ensures the White House resumes tours as soon as possible. ”
Text of the letter can be found below:
Dear President Trump,
We are writing to express our support for the swift reopening of the White House Visitors Office and the resumption of White House tours.
This time-honored tradition of allowing visitors into the White House was started by Thomas Jefferson in 1805, and previous administrations have been quick to reopen the White House doors to the public, even doing so the day after the Inauguration. Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama all appointed a White House Visitors Office Director prior to being sworn in, and had reopened the White House to the public at this point.
Nearly 3 million visitors tour the White House each year. As their representatives in Washington, we take pride in assisting our constituents with access to the White House, the Capitol Building and other sites in our nation’s capital. Many of our constituents have already contacted us requesting to visit the White House, and thus far we have not been able to give them any information about when the tours will resume.
While we are pleased that the First Lady’s Chief of Staff, Lindsay Reynolds, has said she is working to ensure that the White House Visitors Office is fully staffed, we urge you to ensure a White House Visitors Office Director is appointed and tours resume as soon as possible.
Eliot L. Engel Grace Napolitano
Jerrold Nadler Joseph P. Kennedy III
Albio Sires Brenda L. Lawrence
Stephanie Murphy Chellie Pingree
Dwight Evans Marcy Kaptur
Luis V. Gutiérrez Richard M. Nolan
Gerald E. Connolly Ted W. Lieu
Suzanne Bonamici Mark Pocan
Bonnie Watson Coleman
Gwen S. Moore Jared Huffman
Jamie Raskin Dina Titus
James P. McGovern Donald S. Beyer Jr.
Mike Thompson Seth Moulton
Collin C. Peterson Scott Peters
Louise M. Slaughter
Ami Bera, M.D.
Gregory W. Meeks Raúl M. Grijalva
Brendan F. Boyle Nita M. Lowey
Doris Matsui Julia Brownley
Earl Blumenauer Joe Courtney
Eleanor Holmes Norton Jackie Speier
Elizabeth H. Esty