January 12th, 2012
03:14 PM ET
Why weren’t press cameras allowed to capture President Obama’s first visit to his campaign headquarters Wednesday?
The mystery continues.
The previously unscheduled stop was announced to members of the press corps on Air Force One as the president traveled to Chicago for a series of fundraisers. During the announcement, Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the press would not be allowed to cover the event, but did not give a specific reason why.
On Thursday, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney suggested the reason reporters were kept at bay was because the stop was “on the fly and brief.”
But the White House press staff often ushers in the traveling press to similarly brief and so-called “off the record” stops when they want cameras to capture the president shaking hands and rubbing elbows at small businesses and restaurants.
“We're not hiding the fact that he is engaged in some campaign activities,” Carney said. “I try and tell you - give you the facts, which is the fact is the president's reelection campaign isn't across the river in Roslyn, isn't in Washington, it's in Chicago, halfway across the country.”
Carney added the quick visit to the headquarters “underscores the point I've been trying to make from here in answer to questions about the president's reelection campaign, which is that he is here in Washington focused on doing his job as president.”