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White House Handpicks Press for Closed Meeting
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Summary: The White House held a closed press meeting instead of the typical televised briefing where select news outlets were not invited to participate.

Several top media organizations were blocked from attending a White House meeting held in a closed office. The move by the White House is unprecedented but not completely unexpected when considering the tense relationship between President Trump and the media.


The off-camera press briefing was held in press secretary Sean Spicer’s office. The reporters present for the meeting, known as a gaggle, were preselected. Those not included were reporters from Politico, CNN, BuzzFeed, the Los Angeles Times, and the New York Times.

The meeting was in held in place of a daily televised Q-and-A meeting. Spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said they “had the pool there so everyone would be represented and get an update from us today.” The four major television networks – ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox News – were included as well as The Washington Times, One America New Network, and Breitbart News.

The Associated Press, Time magazine, and USA Today opted out of the meeting in a boycott of excluding others like CNN and The New York Times. A spokesman from The Wall Street Journal said, “The Wall Street Journal strongly objects to the White House’s decision to bar certain media outlets from today’s gaggle. Had we known at the time, we would not have participated and we will not participate in such closed briefings in the future.”

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The White House Correspondents Association was not happy with how things were handled either, stating, “The WHCA board is protesting strongly against how today’s gaggle is being handled by the White House. We encourage the organizations that were allowed in to share the material with others in the press corps who were not. The board will be discussing this further with White House staff.”

Do you think the move was because of the disrespect some of the reporters have displayed during previous briefings or strictly a move by the President to punish the media? Tell us in the comments below.

To learn more about President Trump’s presidency so far, read these articles:




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