Society

Fox News Criticizes White House Over Press Restrictions

| by Jordan Smith

A Fox News anchor has criticized the White House after a number of media outlets were denied access to a press gaggle with Press Secretary Sean Spicer.

While Fox was allowed to attend, journalists from CNN, the Guardian and The New York Times were prohibited from doing so, the Guardian reported.

"Some at CNN & NYT stood w/Fox News when the Obama admin attacked us & tried to exclude us-a WH gaggle should be open to all credentialed orgs," Fox's Bret Baier wrote in a tweet, according to the Hill.

Gaggles are more informal gatherings than press conferences.

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Conservative outlets Breitbart, the Washington Times and One America News Network were granted access. The Associated Press and Time were invited but boycotted the event.

CNN released a statement on the decision, describing it as "an unacceptable development by the Trump White House."

New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet stated that "nothing like this has ever happened at the White House in our long history of covering multiple administrations of different parties," according to the Guardian.

Jeff Mason, president of the White House Correspondents Association, said the organization was "protesting strongly."

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"We encourage the organizations that were allowed in to share the material with others in the press corps who were not," Mason added. "The board will be discussing this further with White House staff."

White House spokesperson Stephanie Grisham took a different view of the Feb. 24 incident.

"Claims that outlets were excluded are not factual," she said.

Spicer defended the decision.

"We want to make sure we answer your questions, but we don’t need to do everything on camera every day," he told the gathering of journalists in his office.

Earlier on Feb. 24, President Donald Trump delivered a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in which he repeated an earlier charge that most of the press was "the enemy of the American people."

He proposed preventing media outlets from using anonymous sources in their stories.

"As you saw throughout the entire campaign, and even now, the fake news doesn’t tell the truth," Trump added.

Trump has criticized CNN and The New York Times in the past for their coverage of him.

"I say it doesn’t represent the people, it never will represent the people, and we’re going to do something about it," said Trump.

Sources: The Hill, The Guardian / Photo Credit: VOA/Wikimedia Commons

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