Card Check: Transparency! (Since Clarified)

By March 5, 2009Labor Unions

White House Bars Video Coverage of Biden’s Speech to Labor Union

( – When Vice President Joe Biden speaks to the annual meeting of AFL-CIO officials at the plush Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach Thursday morning, television cameras will not be allowed to cover his speech – on orders from the White House, Fox News reported.

UPDATE (11:20 a.m.): CNSNews clarifies or adds, “Update: White House Says It Did Not Bar Media Coverage of Biden’s Speech to Labor Union“:

But later Thursday morning, Biden’s spokesperson disputed Fox’s report, saying the White House did not request that Biden’s speech be closed to the media: “Traditionally, the AFL-CIO Executive Council meetings are closed press,” said Elizabeth Alexander, the vice president’s spokesperson. “Each of its sessions this week have been closed press,” she noted.

“As part of its unprecedented commitment to transparency, Vice President Biden’s office asked that a change to the policy be made so that a pool of print reporters would be allowed to cover the speech, and a full transcript of the vice president’s remarks will be sent out this afternoon.”

Unprecedented? For a point of comparison, we note that when Vice President Cheney spoke to the National Association of Manufacturers in February 2006, the event was open to the press. We blogged about his remarks extensively.

In any case, good for the Vice President’s office and thank you. It’s good to get more than just labor’s interpretation of his remarks.

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