The White House circled the wagons with an "off-the-record" briefing with reporters yesterday (Friday), which began around 12:45pm and pushed back the daily, on-the-record WH press briefing to 1:45pm, sources familiar with the meeting tell POLITICO. WH press secretary Jay Carney did not respond to a request for confirmation of the meeting.
The off-the-record session was announced to reporters in the wake of an ABC News report showing that White House and State Dept. officials were involved in revising the now-discredited CIA talking points about the attack on Benghazi.
According to WH representative Josh Ernest, the meeting was conducted on "deep background." When asked by Politico to explain the meaning of "deep background," as defined by the White House, POLITICO reports that Ernest emailed: "Deep background means that the info presented by the briefers can be used in reporting but the briefers can't be quoted."
Our undercover Washington correspondent tells us that a clandestine source, operating under the name of "Deep Throat," told him that President Barack Milhous O'Nixon, referring to the 14 news organizations present (including television, print and online), called them a "trusted arm of the White House press office." Further, the President impressed upon them the importance of credibility: "C'mon guys, let's get our story straight!"
[Photo credit: The Ulsterman Report]