The Vatican press office on Thursday canceled plans to broadcast a live video of President Biden’s Friday meeting with Pope Francis, and now it will only broadcast the arrival of Biden’s motorcade.
It is unclear whether the White House has requested the broadcast be halted. Spokespeople did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.
For years, the Associated Press has reported that the Vatican has streamed video of the Pope’s meetings with visiting leaders.
Biden is the second Catholic president and has met Pope Francis on three previous occasions, but not as president. The visit follows a meeting this month between Francis and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
The 84-year-old pope rejected a push by more conservative US bishops to reject communion with politicians who support legal access to abortion, such as Pelosi and Biden. US bishops will meet next month to discuss the idea.
Press access issues hit Biden’s first foreign trip to Europe in June. American reporters were suddenly denied coverage of a meeting between Biden and despotic Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan — leaving American reporters dependent on Erdogan’s press office for information. Biden apparently watched the amusement as Russian President Vladimir Putin’s private security team dug out American reporters from a pool primer.
In Washington, D.C., Biden’s press agents harassed the White House press by severely restricting access.
Biden has given far fewer interviews than his new predecessors, and reporters have been prescreened using an ambiguous selection process due to dubious COVID-19 “spacing restrictions” at large event venues, though there have been no such restrictions since June in relatively recent years. A small briefing room in the White House.
At a recent event, Biden joked with preschoolers about avoiding the press.
“They have to ask you all kinds of questions. And you try to figure out how you can avoid answering them sometimes,” he told the children.