The award came from a group of transparency advocates, but was done in secret during a presentation that was originally supposed to be open to the press two weeks ago. The ceremony was “inexplicably postponed,’ however, says Politico, and instead happened on Monday “without disclosing the meeting on his public schedule or letting photographers or print reporters into the room.”
“Our understanding going into the meeting was that it would have a pool photographer and a print reporter, and it turned out to be a private meeting,” Gary Bass of OMB Watch, who was present at the clandestine ceremony, told POLITICO. “He was so on point, so on target in the conversation with us, it is baffling why he would not want that message to be more broadly heard by reporters and the public interest community and the public generally.”
But yet no member of the press was allowed in. And despite Press Secretary Jay Carney’s assertions earlier this month that the president “has demonstrated a commitment to transparency and openness,” some aren’t buying it.
“I don’t feel moved today to say ‘thank you, Mr. President,’” Steve Aftergood, the director of the Project on Government Secrecy at the Federation of American Scientists, told Politico. Instead, he defined the award as “aspirational.”
“And in that sense, one could say it resembles the award at the Nobel Peace Prize,” Aftergood said. “It’s not because Obama brought peace to anyone but because people hoped he would be a force for good in the world, and maybe that’s the way to understand this award.”
Read the rest at Politico.