Gov. Ricketts creates credential system for media covering events

Nebraska News

FILE – In this Feb. 26, 2021 file photo, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts speaks during a news conference at the Nebraska State Capitol in Lincoln, Neb. The Biden administration’s plan to funnel more coronavirus aid into states with greater unemployment has irked governors with lower jobless rates, even though many have economies that weren’t hit as hard by the pandemic. “You’re penalizing people who have done the right thing,” said Gov. Ricketts, a Republican whose state has reported the nation’s lowest unemployment rate over the last several months. (Kenneth Ferriera/Lincoln Journal Star via AP)

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — News outlets that want to attend Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts’ press conferences will have to answer detailed questions about their business model and submit a notarized letter from a manager before they’ll be given access to ask questions under a new policy.

The governor’s office announced the policy after a reporter from an Omaha-based online news outlet said the governor’s office ignored her emailed questions and eventually shut her out of a March 31 news conference that she tried to attend in person.

The incident prompted Nebraska’s two largest newspapers, the Omaha World-Herald and Lincoln Journal Star, to publish a joint editorial criticizing the decision as an affront to free-press rights and a political move by the conservative, Republican governor.

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