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The Nation; WHITE HOUSE NOTEBOOK; An Identity Crisis Unfolds in a Not-So-Elite Press Corps; Defining a journalist has always been an inexact science, even before the Gannon affair.
Los Angeles Times - Los Angeles, Calif.
Subjects: Presidents; Journalists; Press conferences; Security
Author: Neuman, Johanna
Date: Feb 25, 2005
Start Page: A.18
Section: Main News; Part A; National Desk
Abstract (Document Summary)

Gannon did not have a permanent White House press pass that requires an FBI background check. Those who carry it have clear access to the White House and frequently travel with the president. And the Standing Committee of Correspondents on Capitol Hill, which accredits more than 2,000 journalists who write for daily news organizations, refused to give him a congressional press pass.

"This guy [Gannon] got caught and he's a little weirder than most -- but he's no weirder than Evelyn Y. Davis," said [Marlin Fitzwater], referring to the shareholder advocate who covers the White House for her corporate newsletter, "Highlights and Lowlights."

Former Press Secretary Ari Fleischer, who gave Gannon a day pass even before Talon News was launched, told the trade magazine Editor & Publisher that at one point he hesitated to call on the reporter, then resumed after being assured he was not a GOP plant.

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