I just saw this in the FOX News website. It think it’s pretty indicative of what we can see from a Barack Obama presidency when it comes to Freedom of Expression.
Here’s the source story from the Washington Times:
The Washington Times, which has covered the Barack Obama campaign from the start, was kicked off the Democrat’s campaign plane for the final 72 hours of the race.
The Obama campaign informed the newspaper Thursday evening of its decision, which came two days after The Times editorial page endorsed Senator John McCain over Mr. Obama. The Times editorial page runs completely independent of the news department.
“This feels like the journalistic equivalent of redistributing the wealth, we spent hundreds of thousands of dollars covering Senator Obama’s campaign, traveling on his plane, and taking our turn in the reporter’s pool, only to have our seat given away to someone else in the last days of the campaign,” said Washington Times Executive Editor John Solomon.
“I hope the candidate that promises to unite America isn’t using a litmus test to determine who gets to cover his campaign.”
The Times formally protested the decision, noting that it has one of the top 20 largest newspaper Web sites in the country, distributes its print edition in the key battleground state of Virginia, and has had its stories repeatedly cited by Mr. Obama and other Democrats throughout the campaign.
“Sen. Obama himself demonstrated he appreciates the importance of The Washington Times and its news coverage. In June, he wrote a letter citing a Times’ investigative project that highlighted government mistreatment of our veterans. Sen. Obama requested an investigation by Congress and the administration, both of which confirmed the problems and led to corrective action at the VA. In his August acceptance speech, Sen. Obama also prominently mentioned our interview with Sen. Phil Gramm and the now infamous comments about a ‘mental recession’ and a ‘nation of whiners’,” wrote Mr. Solomon in an e-mail to Obama campaign manager David Plouffe.
Times reporter Christina Bellantoni, who has covered the Democratic campaign since 2007, is being asked to leave the campaign plane starting Sunday. In defending its decision, the Obama campaign said it respected Ms. Bellantoni’s reporting and simply ran out of seats on the campaign plane for the finale because of high demand. It also noted that the Obama campaign is allowing some news media critical of the Democrat to travel, including Fox News.
“Unfortunately, demand for seats on the plane during this final weekend has far exceeded supply, and because of logistical issues we made the decision not to add a second plane. This means we’ve had to make hard and unpleasant for all concerned decisions about limiting some news organizations and in some cases not being in a position to offer space to news organizations altogether,” wrote Obama campaign Senior Advisor and Chief Communications Officer Anita Dunn in an e-mail.
“There are simply no more seats on Senator Obama’s plane,” she added. “There are press seats available on Senator Bidens plane for travel this final weekend and The Washington Times is encouraged to include our vice presidential nominee in your coverage plans for this final stretch.”
A Dallas Morning News reporter also was excluded from the Obama campaign plane after the newspaper’s editorial department endorsed Mr. McCain.
“We were informed last week there wouldn’t be room,” Bob Mong, editor of The Dallas Morning News, said Friday. “We protested, we continue to protest. We believe that a paper of our size and stature ought to be on the plane. We noticed that they allowed some friendlier media on the plane.”
The Dallas Morning News endorsed Mr. McCain in an editorial two weeks ago, but Mr. Mong said he could not prove the Obama campaign acted in reprisal.
“We don’t have any evidence of that,” Mr. Mong said. “We’re obviously asking the question.”
Riiiiight. They “ran out of seats” on the plane.
Pardon me, but did a bunch of news agencies suddenly pop-up over the last week or so? I haven’t seen any. I can’t imagine how all of these huge, overnight media organizations have garnered such a large subscribership in such a brief amount of time such that they get higher priority over the Washington Times. Yep. No favoritism here.
Had Bush done something like this, we’d be hearing about how the US was now officially a police state, and the State controls the press. Not that this hasn’t stopped delusional idiots from spewing this utter garbage in the first place (how is it that people are allowed to freely express that freedom of expression had been suppressed?).
What’s clear is that a clear pattern of behavior is beginning to emerge when it comes to Barack Obama. If, in the case of Joe the Plumber, you make his Excellency look like the Marxist idiot he is, then you send out the goons to destroy you in the friendly press outlets. If you don’t say or do what Obama wants you to say or do, you’re tossed off of Airforce One.
This is a vision of things to come.