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‘This is Not a Hyperventilation Issue’: Ari Fleischer on White House Blocking Outlets From Gaggle

In response to news that CNN, the New York Times, Politico, and other media outlets were blocked from attending a White House press gaggle today, former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer appeared on CNN to provide his take. And he seemed to not have much sympathy for those iced out.

Highlighting that press secretaries need to meet with all of the media and that this was counterproductive, Fleischer explained that there is nothing unusual about presidents and staff meeting with exclusively selected reporters.

“So you have to separate the two,” he told host Brooke Baldwin. “This is not a threat to the First Amendment. This is not a hyperventilation issue — the Dean Baquet statement that this has never been done before? Maybe not by the press secretary, but it’s been done regularly by White Houses.”

Fleischer would also note that this was not a daily press briefing but a gaggle, so one has to take that into context and account. He further added that the president meets with the press corps more than anyone he can think of.

Watch the interview above, via CNN.

[image via screengrab]

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