In keeping with his publicized disdain for American media and resistance to the idea of transparency as a public figure, Donald Trump did not allow any news cameras in the room when he met with President Obama in the White House for the first time on Thursday afternoon.
Breaking a long-standing tradition employed by previous presidents in an effort to build trust with the American people, Trump refused to allow the normal pool of press to accompany him for the sit-down, the Associated Press reports. The gesture falls in line with the limited interactions Trump had with the press for the duration of his campaign, during which he often spoke negatively about the way the media covered his many offensive, disturbing, sexist and racist moments both before and during his run for the presidency. AP also noted that several prominent news organizations reached out weeks ago to begin the process of coordinating the pool of journalists who would take turns accompanying Trump in the days before and after the election, but his team refused to cooperate and ultimately declined to have the discussion at all.
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The press has historically played an integral part in ensuring the American people are able to maintain an open and honest view of the president without interference, which plays a huge role in shaping the relationship he has with the people. Trump doing all that he can to keep the media at bay up to this point will likely send the message that he has much to hide – something voters aren’t likely to take in stride.