Politico reports that Obama’s second inaugural oath for the “most transparent administration in history” might be administered privately, without any media present (h/t Morning Jolt):
“Mindful of the historic nature of this occasion, we expect the White House will continue the long tradition of opening the President’s official swearing-in to full press access, and we as an organization are looking forward to working with the administration to make that happen,” Ed Henry, the Fox News correspondent and president of the White House Correspondents Association, said in a statement.
Because inauguration day falls on a Sunday in 2013, Chief Justice John Roberts will officially administer the official oath of office in a private ceremony that day. The public inauguration on the Capitol Building’s West Front — at which Roberts will administer a second, symbolic oath of office — will take place the next day.
In early meetings with the inaugural committee, officials privately indicated to reporters that the Jan. 20 event could be closed to reporters and cameras, with an official photograph supplied to press by White House photographer Pete Souza, sources familiar with the meeting told POLITICO.
The White House Correspondents Association has reason to be concerned. While Obama’s second oath of office in 2009 (if you remember, he had to do it twice) wasn’t completely closed to the media, only four reporters were allowed to attend, writes Dylan Byers.
This issue seems more about principle than anything else, since Obama hasn’t exactly followed through on his vow to run a more transparent administration. It’s about time the press finally started calling him out on it. Maybe now that he’s won reelection the media will actually do its job and report critically on his presidency. At the very least this is a sign he’s not going to get the kid-gloves treatment he had during the election season.