POLITICO Playbook: Cancel Your Christmas Plans …

The national Christmas tree is pictured

The White House did not give a reason for not scheduling the gathering. | Susan Walsh/AP Photo

White House

White House: No plans for holiday party with press

A White House known for disrupting norms is breaking with yet another annual tradition and does not have plans to host a holiday party this year for members of the press.

“The White House Christmas press party was not put on the holiday schedule this year,” a White House official said Thursday, adding that “we have accommodated members of the media and their families who have asked to see the holiday decorations” by arranging open White House tours for them.

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The White House did not give a reason for not scheduling the gathering.

The annual party had been panned by some critics, who said it blurred the ethical line between White House reporters and those they cover. The event is often attended by media executives, and network anchors have been known to fly into town to attend. Presidents of both parties have been criticized in the past for excluding journalists who covered their administrations less favorably.

Trump’s White House did host a party for the press in 2017, though he and first lady Melania Trump attended only briefly and delivered remarks to the journalists gathered before leaving. Fox News first reported Thursday that there would be no 2018 gathering.

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Trump has referred to many in the media as "fake news" and the "enemy of the people." Since he's been in office, the president has skipped out on the annual dinner hosted each year by the White House Correspondents’ Association. The White House sent no one in Trump's place during his first year in office, but press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders attended this year and was the subject of eviscerating jokes by the headline comedian, Michelle Wolf.

The Trump White House has also lately eschewed the daily press briefing that had been considered an established occurrence in every other administration, only holding intermittent briefings for reporters.

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      Source : https://www.politico.com/story/2018/12/13/white-house-christmas-party-press-1063232

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