First Lady’s Office Holds ‘Listen Only’ and ‘Invitation Only’ Conference Calls for Reporters


On Tuesday, the office of First Lady Michelle Obama sponsored several conference calls featuring administration officials discussing Mrs. Obama’s “Let’s Move!” campaign to combat childhood obesity but “with listen-only lines for the media,” according to The Washington Daybook. On Wednesday, Mrs. Obama personally conducted a conference call for “online media” that was “by invitation only,” according to the Daybook.

Traditionally, conference calls that public figures in Washington, D.C. hold for the media–which, obviously, are designed to get media attention for the public figure–allow the reporters who join the call to ask at least a few questions.

The Washington Daybook is a service widely used by Washington, D.C., news organizations that provides detailed schedules and contact information for federal government events and federal officials at least a day ahead of time.

The Daybook sent out on the afternoon of Monday, Feb. 7, said that on the afternoon of Feb. 8 the office of First Lady Michelle Obama would be sponsoring a series of conference calls on the first anniversary of her “Let’s Move” campaign that would feature U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro and Flint, Mich., Mayor Dayne Walling. The Daybook listed as the contact for these conference calls the “First Lady’s Press Office.”

Read More: By Matt Cover, CNS News


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