The battle between the press and the Hillary Clinton campaign over access to her events heated up yesterday when the pool reporter was denied entry to a campaign event in New Hampshire for dubious reasons.
The Daily Mail’s U.S. political editor, David Martosko, was chosen by the press covering Clinton to be the pool reporter for her events in Mew Hampshire on Monday. A pool reporter is usually assigned to cover all events pertaining to a candidate for a specific day when there is limited media access.
The Clinton campaign initially said that they barred Martosko because they were “getting a lot of blowback from foreign outlets that want to be part of the pool and we need to rethink it all, maybe for a day, and just cool things off until we can have a discussion.”
After Martosko pointed out that the U.K. based Guardian is part of the pool, the Clinton campaign tried to clarify their earlier statement by saying that they were “just trying to follow the same process and system the White House has.” The Daily Mail isn’t a part of the White House press corps.
All of this sent the Morning Joe crew into a tizzy with liberal co-host Mika Brzezinski asking, “So is anyone allowed in?”
New York Times reporter Nicholas Confessore said, “You know it isn’t actually that hard” to let a reporter in to cover an event, adding, “When you shut out that reporter, you are shutting out those other outlets from your event.”
The Clinton press pool rallied behind Martosko, resulting in the following statement from Clinton campaign spokesman Nick Merrill:
We want a happy press corps as much as the press corps does. And we work very hard to achieve that in tandem with them. It’s a long campaign, and we are going to do our best to find equilibrium and best accommodate interest from as many news outlets as possible, given the space limitations of our events.
Happy press corps? Space limitations? The press has been complaining ever since Hillary launched her campaign in April about the lack of access and interviews that she has given, and has tried working with the Clinton camp on a resolution, but to no avail. As for space limitations, that’s why there is a pool reporter assigned to cover smaller events, so that the press can still report on Clinton’s activities when the campaign can’t accommodate the entire pool.
This is more a case of the Clinton campaign barring a reporter they saw as unfriendly to the campaign, than anything else, and is an example of what type of president she would be if elected.