WHCA votes to remove outlet from briefing room after reporter violates coronavirus distancing rules

The White House Correspondents' Association (WHCA) on Wednesday voted to remove a news outlet from the White House briefing seat rotation after a reporter for that outlet violated social distancing policies put in place amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The WHCA asked reporters in March not to attend White House press briefings if they do not have a seat. The association has limited seating in the briefing room to 14 outlets per day in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines on social distancing amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

The WHCA Board in an email to correspondents did not name the reporter or the outlet in question but said the reporter twice attended White House briefings “in contravention” of the policy.

ADVERTISEMENT

The news came after Chanel Rion, a reporter for the conservative One America News Network, stood in the aisle of the briefing room to ask questions at press briefings on Tuesday and Wednesday without having an assigned seat. 

“We are writing to inform you that the WHCA Board has voted this evening to remove a news outlet from the rotation for a seat in the briefing room,” the WHCA Board wrote in the email sent to correspondents Wednesday evening, shortly before the conclusion of the day’s briefing. “We did this because a reporter for this outlet twice attended press briefings in contravention of this policy.”

Rion did not immediately return an email for comment.