Posted By LambChop
The White House continues to go back to the well and use tried and true strategies to push its own agenda. Thus far, it’s worked. A couple of weeks ago, the Obama administration secretly invited their favorite lapdog media types to a “deep background” (that means “off the record’) West Wing meeting to “discuss Benghazi.” By nightfall, bloggers in attendance had dutifully crafted their VERY SIMILAR posts... no doubt influenced by the administration’s clear agenda for that meeting. Since then, the Benghazi scandal, despite the deaths of four Americans and a cover- up that appears to go to the highest level of the State Department and White House is largely off the radar again. Frankly, the “off the record” strategy worked.
Wednesday, the White House tried the same trick again. This time, the subject was DOJ’s abuse of power with the two press-related scandals masterminded by Obama’s favorite hatchet man, Attorney General Eric Holder. Holder invited media representatives to quietly sit down and discuss guidelines for handling investigations into leaks. One catch – the meeting would again be off the record.
This time the lapdog media bared its teeth – The New York Times refused to attend. "It isn't appropriate for us to attend an off-the-record meeting with the attorney general," executive editor Jill Abramson said in a statement.
The Associated Press also issued a statement Wednesday objecting to Holder’s meeting: "If it is not on the record, AP will not attend and instead will offer our views on how the regulations should be updated in an open letter," said Erin Madigan White, the AP's media relations manager.
CNN also jumped on the bandwagon and promised to decline the invitation for an off-the-record meeting. A CNN spokesperson says if the meeting with the attorney general is on the record, CNN would plan to participate.
The Huffington Post's Washington bureau chief, Ryan Grim, also said he will not attend unless the meeting is on the record. "A conversation specifically about the freedom of the press should be an open one. We have a responsibility not to betray that," Grim told CNN.
Politico (still in full lapdog mode) indicated that editor-in-chief John Harris plans to attend one of the meetings with Holder.
Of course the fact that it was even a question as to whether or not the Associated Press would attend is simply mind-numbing. After all, it was the AP who was systematically wiretapped about a leak concerning a thwarted 2012 plot in Yemen to try to blow up a plane with a bomb. The government also obtained e-mails and phone records for a Fox journalist who allegedly received a classified report on North Korea from a former State Department contractor.
A Justice Department official said Holder would hold his first meetings with the media on Thursday and Friday.
Tweet from a Democrat pundit:
POTUS asked AG to review how leak investigations are done but some in the media refuse to meet with him. Kind of forfeits your right gripe.— Brad Woodhouse (@woodhouseb) May 29, 2013