White House bars news organisations including BBC and CNN from press briefing

Tapper then turned his attention to Trump: "This White House does not seem to respect the idea of accountability. this White House does not seem to value an independent press".

Don't describe what's happening between the Trump White House and the press as a "feud".

"I don't look at us as the enemy of the White House", Executive Editor Dean Baquet said in response.

Hours earlier, at the Conservative Political Action Conference outside Washington, President Trump mocked and disparaged the news media. The Times wrote that aides to Spicer allowed in reporters only from a handpicked group of news organizations that had previously confirmed their attendance.

A reporter could be heard on the phone saying that the Trump administration "excluded a number of news organizations that have been targeted by the president". "And they are. They are the enemy of the people".

On Friday, Donald Trump began the day by denouncing "fake news", a term he has commandeered for stories he doesn't like. The move prompted outrage from proponents of the First Amendment and the freedom of the press.

Several major news outlets, including The New York Times, CNN and BBC, were barred from attending an off-camera White House briefing, an unprecedented move that escalated tensions in the already tense relationship between the Trump administration and the media.

The off-camera briefing with Sean Spicer, the press secretary, was not exclusively for conservative outlets. "It's not acceptable; in fact it's petulant and indicative of a lack of basic understanding of how an adult White House functions". "Shame on reporters who didn't walk out", said Spencer Ackerman of The Guardian. The White House schedule released Thursday evening said there would be a gaggle, not a full briefing.

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".

"I'm not against the media, I'm not against the press".

"It's a New York Sunday tradition: coffee, bagels, and a FREE PRESS", read a sign held by one of the demonstrators, according to the Times. "The board will be discussing this further with White House staff".

  • Salvatore Jensen


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