Talking Points Memo’s Josh Marshall reports that he’s been “Banned at The DoJ” — taken off the email distribution list for press releases and the like. This has to be one of the more lame governmental PR decisions of the recent past.
TPM and its sister websites did spectacular work last year in uncovering and pushing ahead the story of the political firings of U.S. attorneys (and government sliming of those prosecutors who dared ask why they were being fired), which is the obvious reason the Justice Department has shunned them. The department PR person observes in an email to TPM that the releases are otherwise available:
We do however have all our press releases on our website and update them the minute they are released so I would suggest looking there. You can also always call us with press inquiries.
But the message is plain — and petty.
As you might expect, the department doesn’t make its releases available with an RSS feed. That would be, well, up to date.
So here’s a suggestion for a non-shunned journalist covering the Justice Department. Kindly set up an automatic relay in your email to forward all department press releases to Marshall and his team.
And let your department contacts know how idiotic the public-affairs people — under orders from their bosses? — are being.