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New York Times Accuses Biden of ‘Avoiding Questions’ from Journalists

By Jake Beardslee · April 26, 2024

The New York Times issued a forceful statement this week criticizing President Biden for systematically avoiding questions from major independent news outlets during his term in office so far.  The White House/Wikimedia

"For anyone who understands the role of the free press in a democracy, it should be troubling that President Biden has so actively and effectively avoided questions from independent journalists during his term," a statement recently released by the Times said.  Haxorjoe/Wikimedia

The statement highlights Biden's lack of press conferences and sit-down interviews compared to his predecessors.  Office of the President of the United States/Wikimedia

While noting it has sought interviews with Biden as it has with all presidents, the Times says it is more concerned about the broader principle at stake.  Kevin Prichard Photography/Wikimedia

"Systematically avoiding interviews and questions from major news organizations doesn't just undermine an important norm, it also establishes a dangerous precedent that future presidents can use to avoid scrutiny and accountability," the statement reads.  The New York Times

In recent meetings with the White House, Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger urged Biden to grant interviews to the Times as well as The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Reuters, CNN and other major outlets that millions rely on to understand the government.  Knight Foundation/Wikimedia

While acknowledging Biden's right to refuse interviews with outlets he dislikes, the Times argues the free press "plays a vital role in providing insights into his thinking and worldview, allowing the public to assess his record and hold him to account."  The White House/Wikimedia

The statement represents a sharp rebuke of Biden's media approach from one of the country's most influential news organizations.  Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America/Wikimedia

It raises concerns that a lack of press access could reduce transparency and government accountability.  The White House/Wikimedia