The White House prevented certain media outlets from participating in the daily press briefing, Friday, but President Donald Trump's administration was not alone when being accused of limiting the press' access in similar circumstances.
A handful of so-called left-leaning news outlets, including BBC, CNN, the Hill, The New York Times, Politico and RealClearPolitics, were told they could not enter the White House press briefing room Friday afternoon to listen to White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer deliver his daily media address, the New York Daily News reported. The move prompted outrage from proponents of the First Amendment and the freedom of the press.
Spicer previously told Politico, one of the outlets barred from Friday's briefing, that he would never ban specific new organizations.
Former White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer, who served under President George W. Bush, said the decision by the White House Friday was perfectly in line with protocol.
Fleischer may just be right, as the move has historical precedence, especially as it relates to presidents themselves holding press briefings.
Former President Barack Obama was generous with his time in terms of allowing reporters to interview him individually, but his Q&A sessions were far fewer compared to Bush. Obama held just 107 of them during his first term, compared to 355 for Bush, according to Vanity Fair.
But that may be beside the point.
Trump has long called the media "crooked" and "dishonest," among other negative adjectives, and the president echoed that sentiment Friday during a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland. The day after Trump won the White House in November, he was accused of preventing the press from traveling with him for a White House meeting. In other words, Friday's actions by the White House fell right in line with Trump's views of the press.
But that was apparently no solace for some members of the media and White House reporters who missed out on Spicer's daily press briefing.
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