The RTDNA Voice of the First Amendment Task Force joined several White House reporters today in blasting Trump administration Press Secretary Sean Spicer for barring cameras and audio from yet another daily press briefing Monday.
CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta was among the more outspoken critics of Spicer’s ban. He posted a series of tweets Monday afternoon. Among them:
According to a report in The Hill, Spicer hasn’t held an on-camera briefing since Monday, June 12. The story says at least one print reporter also objected to Monday’s ban on video and audio. It also says, “Acosta shouted: ‘It’s off-camera and you can’t answer questions?’ Acosta then went on TV to call the off-camera briefing ‘bizarre.’
“Officials at the White House, just like public officials at every city hall, state capitol, and national government entity, have a responsibility to conduct the public’s business with as much transparency as possible. To prevent broadcast news organizations from using their cameras and microphones is irresponsible and unfair,” said Dan Shelley, RTDNA Incoming Executive Director, who spearheads the task force.
“Further, to refuse to answer questions from legitimate, responsible news organizations such as CNN and others is unacceptable,” Shelley added. “RTDNA agrees unequivocally with a tweet Acosta posted in February, in which he said, ‘We are real news, Mr. President.’”
RTDNA formed the Voice of the First Amendment Task Force to defend against threats to the First Amendment and news media access, and to help the public better understand why responsible journalism is essential to their daily lives. People wishing to support RTDNA’s efforts may reach out to the task force by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.