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CNN, other media, blocked from 'gaggle' with White House press secretary Sean Spicer

This was posted on Friday, February 24, 2017 by Rodney Ho on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

This afternoon, Atlanta's CNN and several other news organizations were blocked today from participating in a more informal press briefing called a "gaggle" with White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer.

Traditionally, such "gaggles" are open to anybody willing to listen in. Because of the blockage, Time and Associated Press boycotted it. Others locked out included Politico, The New York Times, Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, Los Angeles Times and most of the foreign press.

Those who were part of it included  Breitbart, Fox News, the Washington Times, Wall Street Journal, CBS News, NBC News, ABC News, and Bloomberg.

Noah Bierman of the L.A. Times tweeted that no news was made. Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer said  on CNN  this was not unprecedented and not that big a deal, feeling the media was over reacting.

Nonetheless, CNN didn't hide its displeasure. In a Tweet, the company called this an "unacceptable development." "Apparently, this is how they retaliate when you report facts they don't like. We'll keep reporting regardless."

Anchor Jake Tapper did not mince words on air: "The White House does not seem to respect the idea of accountability. This White House does not seem to value an independent press. There is a word for that line of thinking. The word is un-American."

The Wall Street Journal was not aware of any exclusion and said they will not participate in any closed "gaggles" in the future.

The New York Times posted this:



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About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.