The White House blocked several mainstream media outlets from a press gaggle Friday with press secretary Sean Spicer.
CNN, The New York Times, Politico, Buzzfeed and the Los Angeles Times were not allowed to attend the gaggle, which replaced Spicer’s daily briefing. Reporters from those outlets were surprised when White House aides denied them entrance to the gaggle, reports The New York Times. Incensed reporters quickly tweeted out the news, and several outlets boycotted the gaggle in protest.
A partial list of outlets that were allowed to intend include The Wall Street Journal, CBS, NBC, ABC, Bloomberg, Fox News, Breitbart, and The Washington Times. The Associated Press and TIME did not attend in protest.
“A big deal” Politico’s Manu Raju tweeted Friday afternoon. “WH now picking and choosing which news outlets can attend Spicer gaggle …”
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) February 24, 2017
The blocked outlets played a prominent role in the coverage of Trump’s alleged ties to Russia that he has loudly decried in recent days. CNN and Buzzfeed broke news of the dossier detailing unsubstantiated allegations against Trump, for example.
“This is an unacceptable development by the Trump White House,” CNN tweeted Friday. “Apparently this is how they retaliate when you report facts they don’t like. We’ll keep reporting regardless.”
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) February 24, 2017
“How dare you call yourselves Americans,” Kurt Eichenwald tweeted, referring to Republicans standing behind Trump’s treatment of the press.
The @GOP largely stands by in silence as White House threatens a free press that is a key 2 democracy. How dare u call yourselves Americans.
— Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) February 24, 2017
New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet remarked: “Nothing like this has ever happened with the White House in our long history of covering multiple administrations of different parties.”
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