Transparent? Secrecy-obsessed White House mum on identities of Muslims meeting with president

The “most transparent administration in U.S. history” is at it again. This time refusing to disclose the names of Muslim leaders meeting with the president’s top advisers.

According to the White House, the president met Wednesday with Muslim American “leaders” to discuss “a range of domestic and foreign policy issues” including the upcoming Summit on Countering Violence Extremism, police fairness, anti-Muslim sentiment and even Obamacare.

But the administration is unwilling to disclose exactly who attended the meeting.

Fox News’ Megyn Kelly discussed the story on Wednesday night’s “The Kelly File” with the show’s digital politics editor, Chris Stirewalt.

Stirewalt said there are only two reasons the White House would decline to disclose the names of the Muslim leaders who attended: ungrounded fears that there would be a “lynch mob,” which would betray a “low opinion” by the president of Americans in general, or simply that “he doesn’t want us to know who’s there.”

Neither reason holds water.

Press secretary Josh Earnest predictably defended the move during his daily news briefing Wednesday, and said it was not out of the ordinary for Obama to meet with “a wide variety of communities from across the country.”

Still, the White House would not respond to various media requests asking for a list of those in attendance.

“The president discussed the need to continue countering ISIL and other groups that commit horrific acts of violence, purportedly in the name of Islam,” the White House said in a statement.

“The president reiterated his administration’s commitment to safeguarding civil rights through hate crimes prosecutions and civil enforcement actions,” the statement continued.

The statement noted that the president thanked the attendees and wrote that “his regular interactions with different faith communities provided him with valuable insights and feedback.”


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