White House Access...Or Lack Thereof

Reporters have a bone to pick with the White House regarding an on-going duel about media access to the president's events.

President Obama and Vice President Biden were meeting with Congressional leaders at the White House Wednesday for a fourth straight day to discuss the issue of raising the debt ceiling. Only still photographers were granted access to Wednesday's meeting, leaving out TV cameras and print reporters.

When asked why, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney defended the action by saying last time TV cameras were allowed in the meeting, multiple reporters shouted questions at the president and other participants at the table. Some of those reporters had asked Obama questions during a press conference he held just three hours prior. "[T]he purpose of the meeting is not to create a circus, but to negotiate," Carney said. "So today we're doing stills only."

The press corps continued to push the issue and asked if the West Wing was punishing them for throwing questions at the president. "Can I ask you to clarify," one reporter asked, "there's no reporters allowed in today's meeting because reporters misbehaved?"

Carney, a former White House reporter for Time magazine, explained that different meetings have different levels of access and they decide on coverage on a case-by-case basis. "I used to be where you are," Carney said. " It's fine to shout questions. I'm just saying that not every occasion are we going to have a full pool in a meeting."

This obviously did not sit well with reporters who will continue to fight for access to these meetings. President Obama said the meetings with congressional leaders will occur every day until the issue of the deficit is resolved.