Saturday, March 11, 2017

Huffington Post: Journalists Frustrated By Rex Tillerson’s Plan To Travel Abroad Without Them

As of now, when Secretary of State Rex Tillerson travels to Asia next week, the press won’t be along for the ride.
The secretary’s recently reported plans not to travel with journalists are a break with precedent, and come amid growing concerns over access at the State Department, which only started holding press briefings this week. Tillerson himself has yet to give an interview since taking the helm.  

News And Guts:

You know that we just won't sit back and let the media get shut out by the current administration. Today, we are seeing another case where the media is being treated unfairly and certainly different from past administrations.

In what is being called a major break in protocol, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is not letting the press pool accompany him to Asia next week. Traditionally, press travels on the same plane as the Sec. of State. This is how it's been done for decades. This time around, the only way the mediacan get involved is to fly commercial, hope flights are on time and try to chase Sec. Tillerson around once they are there.

At the White House press briefing today, when asked about why the press isn't being allowed to accompany Tillerson, press secretary Sean Spicer tried to dance around the answer, saying everything from it's a -costeffective decision to there is no room on the plane for press. Spicer's full response is attached.

As for the media, they aren't taking this news lightly. Several organizations got together saying:

"We were deeply concerned to hear that Secretary Tillerson plans to travel to Beijing, Seoul and Tokyo to hold key meetings about some of the most important foreign policy issues for the United States without any traveling press.

Not only does this situation leave the public narrative of the meetings up to the Chinese foreign ministry as well as Korea’s and Japan’s, but it gives the American people no window whatsoever into the views and actions of the nation’s leaders."

Joshua Roberts / Reuters
 CNN’s Jake Tapper called the decision “unusual” and “insulting.” By Michael Calderone