Tis the season for holiday parties. And, as usual, the White House is holding quite a few over the next few weeks. However, it would seem that to merit an invitation for such, you must be willing to bow at Biden’s feet and never say a bad word about him or his administration.
Those that have will not be admitted…
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Or at least that’s the story for a number of key media outlets and their White House correspondents – all of which have supposedly published critical pieces about the current administration.
The news comes as the White House has just held two parties for the White House press corps or those who have access to the White House press room and its officials regularly. Naturally, there are a lot of perks for being included in such parties, including bringing a plus one and possibly even getting a photo op in with the President himself.
To be clear, it’s something the White House press correspondents look forward to all year.
However, this year, many of those correspondents and reporters were snubbed from the parties, not receiving an invitation. And it’s been noted that all those not in attendance have, at one point over the last year, published or commented negatively on something the White House has done.
Naturally, the press is not impressed with the move. Not only is it being viewed as “petty” but a complete “break” from Biden’s promises to “restore civility” and honor to the White House.
In addition, some are even saying that it’s further proof that democracy is deteriorating in the US, or at least in the White House.
According to The New York Post, its corps were not invited to the parties. Neither were Washington Examiner, Newsmax, Salon, Fox News, and CBS reporters. As the Post reported, each of these mainstream media outlets has acquired White House press passes and is typically in the room for any official news releases and announcements.
But because members of their network have also posted, commented, or published things that can be seen as critical of Biden, it seems they were left off the invitation list. It is noted that it’s not just journalists who have been shunned either. Producers, technicians, and camera operators have also been banned.
And what’s more, is that this is not the first time the sitting administration has made moves against members of the press.
In June of 2021, the Biden administration issued what is essentially a gag order to all press members. They are not allowed to discuss, question, or investigate any leaks seemingly coming from the White House.
Then in June of this year, more restrictions were put on the press. This one involved a full pre-screening process for each media member before being allowed into press events or to ask questions during such. Only “approved” questions could be asked and only “approved” reporters would be allowed to attend.
And what’s more, the White House never explained why or even how such restrictions were implemented. The White House Press Office refused to explain the process of eliminating some reporters and allowing others in or what criteria were being used to decide such.
Naturally, the whole thing was deemed rather “mysterious.” Shortly after the screening process began, 68 veteran journalists joined in writing a letter to the White House demanding that the restrictions and process be ended.
According to the letter, it was not only “restrictive and antithetical to the concept of free press, but it has been done without any transparent process into how reporters are selected to cover these events.”
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Since then, more press members than ever have agreed, especially after the recent holiday party snubs.
And they aren’t wrong.
In fact, all of these moves by the Biden White House can be seen as a direct assault on free press, free speech, and, therefore, democracy as a whole.
As one reporter recently noted, “Out of his mouth, Biden espouses that the free press is the bedrock of democracy, and he supports a free and independent media and it’s important for us to make sure that governments are held accountable. But it only seems to apply for governments outside the United States.”