Thursday was a busy time for White House press secretary Jay Carney. First, he claimed that the toughest interview president Barack Obama had in 2012 was moderated by Comedy Central's Jon Stewart. As if that wasn't bizarre enough, he later stated that “there has never been a more transparent administration,” a situation that “creates headaches for us and ridiculous stories on Fox News.”
It didn't take long for Greta van Susteren, host of that channel's weeknight On the Record program, to come out swinging and post a message asking: ”White House delusional? Obsessed with Fox News Channel? Thinks we are the only ones that spotted this BS?”
“I think there is no question” that the current government lives up to Obama's repeated promise that his administration would be the most open and transparent in American history, Carney stated during an interview with Major Garrett, chief White House correspondent for CBS News.
He noted: “I've covered two of the previous administrations, and I know a thing or two about the ones before that.”
In an attempt to prove his assertion, Carney stated that Obama and his team provide more information about people who have been cleared by the Secret Service to attend meetings in the White House.
“No administration has ever released” that intelligence before, he continued. “And I think it's fair to say that the release of that information has made this White House far more transparent than any other White House.”
“That doesn't mean it's perfectly transparent,” he admitted, and “it also creates headaches for us and ridiculous stories on Fox News."
Van Susteren responded:
I love to get credit for identifying a falsehood, but we are not the only ones. I also know the White House likes to blame Fox News for all their problems, but it is NOT just Fox News that outs the White House about its false claim of transparency.
The New York Times and the Associated Press, both gold standards in the eyes of many, have been right there with Fox News about the Obama administration transparency problem (lie?). Apparently, Jay Carney “forgot” to include Jill Abramson, executive editor of the New York Times.
On April 11, Abramson charged: “This is the most secretive White House, at least as a journalist, I have ever dealt with.”
The Fox News anchor then turned her attention to the Associated Press, which has stepped up its attack on White House efforts to block coverage of events involving Obama.
Charles Dharapak, the White House photographer for the Associated Press, declared that instead of letting reporters and photographers in at major news events -- like the president's recent meeting with the Dalai Lama -- it is issuing “visual press releases” on social media.
"We don't fault them for using these methods of social outreach," Dharapak said of the White House. "Just don't shut the independent press out.”
After charging that Obama and his staff are “hypersensitive” about his image, the photographer warned: “Once we lose access, we'll never get it back.”
As NewsBusters has previously reported, this definitely isn't the first time the administration has been accused of breaking Obama's vow to be transparent when dealing with the press and the people.
In his media blog for the Washington Post, Erik Wemple expressed amazement in February of 2013 that “President Obama finished an address to members of the National Governors Association at the White House by saying: 'What I want to do is clear out the press so we can take some questions.'”
One month later, Paul Thacker wrote on the left-leaning Slate website that Obama is stonewalling Freedom of Information Act requests and skirting civil liberties -- but gets away with it because he's a Democrat.
One month ago, FNC was hailed as the only news operation to report on the “spectacular failure” of Obama's transparency promise, even though the Center for Effective Government gave failing grades to seven Obama-era agencies.
And on March 25, New York Times reporter James Risen -- who is fighting an order that he testify in the trial of Jeffrey Sterling, a former CIA officer accused of leaking information to him -- declared that the Obama administration is “the greatest enemy of press freedom that we have encountered in at least a generation.”
Liberal Democrats used to be able to say or do anything and not be concerned about it being covered on "the news." But now that we can get news in a “fair and balanced” manner from journalists like Greta van Susteren, reports on unfulfilled promises like ObamaCare and transparency force Democrats like Jay Carney to label such stories as “ridiculous” when they are the ones being “delusional.”