On Laura Ingraham’s radio show on Tuesday, Fox News White House correspondent Ed Henry, the president of the White House Correspondents’ Association, defended the statement he issued on Sunday criticizing the White House for denying press access to the president’s weekend golf outing.
“This is a very simple issue for the White House Correspondents’ Association, which is that we want access and transparency — not just for this president, but for future presidents,” Henry said. “Someday it’ll be another Republican. Someday it might be Hillary Clinton or another Democrat. And we’ve been fighting for access back in the Bush days, the Reagan days, the Clinton days. And you know, unfortunately it’s becoming a political issue.”
“The fact is, day in and day out, we’re not getting a lot of information about what kind of meetings the president is having on immigration reform or on gun control, what’s on his schedule,” Henry continued. “And so the golf game was just one small example. This is a much bigger issue about access. … The president is someone from day one that has pledged more transparency, and I think — not just myself but a broad cross-section of correspondents from print, radio, digital, TV — are saying enough is enough. We want more access.”
Ingraham pointed to a Politico story calling Obama the “puppet master” of the media, but Henry said it’s a mistake to focus entirely on the current administration.
“There is no doubt some of this has been happening for a long time,” he said. “I’m not making this a political issue. This is not about Obama. This is about the institution of the presidency, because frankly — I covered President Bush, and things were not rosy every day in that administration. There were plenty of days when we were frustrated with access to President Bush, but President Bush is no longer in office. President Obama is in office now.”