President Clinton Complains Of Delays in Opening His Records

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More than 50 requests for public access to records from President Clinton's White House have been cleared for release by archivists and are in a sort of presidential limbo, awaiting review by Mr. Clinton's aides or President Bush's deputies, according to new court filings and National Archives officials.

Some or all of the records could emerge in the coming months as Senator Clinton presses her bid for the presidency.

Historians, journalists, authors, and watchdog groups have complained that the review process for records stored at presidential libraries is taking too long. The critics also contend that an executive order Mr. Bush issued in 2001 exacerbated the problem.

Last week, an unexpected figure added his voice to the chorus of those griping about the delays: Mr. Clinton.

"I want to open my presidential records more rapidly than the law requires, and the current administration has slowed down the opening of my own records," the former president said at a press conference held to discuss his philanthropic efforts. "I am not afraid of disclosure and I hope that people will find, among other things … some of the mistakes we made and why."

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