Although President Obama proclaimed his administration will be the “most transparent,” the White House is not disclosing information about the commander-in-chief’s political travel.
President Obama is in the midst of a three-day fundraising tour of California, and White House Correspondent Mark Knoller of CBS News is not happy with President Obama and his team’s refusing “an umpteenth request” from the news agency for political travel information, arguing if the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) got the information, it would be useless to them.
“There’s absolutely nothing in the information related to national security. It wouldn’t do ISIS a bit of good if it got hold of the information.
“Very simply, the White House doesn’t want to disclose the material because it might be embarrassing and would draw lots of criticism, which Mr. Obama can do without.”
White House Spokesman Eric Schultz argues they “follow all rules and regulations.”
“As in other administrations, we follow all rules and regulations to ensure that the DNC or other relevant political committee pays what is required for the president to travel to political events.”
Knoller acknowledges Schultz’s statement that previous administrations have not divulged official presidential political travel, as CBS News has attempted to collect the data since the beginning of the Clinton administration.
On August 15, 2007, then Senator Obama as a presidential candidate sent a press release entitled, “Obama Pledges Most Transparent and Accountable Administration in History.”
“Decisions are made in closed-door meetings, or with the silent stroke of the President’s pen, or because some lobbyist got some Congressman to slip his pet project into a bill during the dead of night. We have to take the blinders off the White House.
“The more people know about what’s going on in Washington, and how their tax dollars are being spent, and who’s raising money for who, the less likely it is that major decisions will be hijacked by lobbyists and special interests.”
In a February 2013 Google Plus Fireside Hangout, the President repeated the mantra once again, “This is the most transparent administration in history.”
“I can document that this is the case…Every visitor that comes into the White House is now part of the public record. Every law we pass and every rule we implement we put online for everyone to see.”
As recently as last month, President Obama banged the transparency drum again at the United Nations General Assembly.
“Citizens rightly demand more responsiveness, more openness, more transparency, more accountability from their governments.”
President Obama has taken heat for several scandals. New York Times reporter James Risen recently theorized to the Maine Sentinel that the scandals surrounding the President would not be happening if he did not hate the media so much.
“I don’t think any of this would be happening under the Obama administration if Obama didn’t want to do it.
“I think Obama hates the press. I think he doesn’t like the press and he hates leaks.
“Journalists have no choice but to fight back because if they don’t, they will become irrelevant.”
Photo credit: ChameleonsEye / Shutterstock.com
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