Throughout her 20-year career as a White House correspondent, April Ryan had always received invites to holiday parties or members of the press at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
But with President Donald Trump occupying the White House, it’s no coincidence this tradition was halted. Ryan, one of few Black White House correspondents, recently said she was excluded from the Trump administration’s Christmas party guest list.
“I’ve given up trying to figure out why,” Ryan told the Washington Post. “He has the right to invite whoever he wants. He chose not to invite me. I’m good.” She added, “I don’t think I was overlooked. I think they don’t like me. For whatever reason, they have disdain for me.”
The relationship between Ryan and the Trump administration hasn’t been amicable. During a March press conference, former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer belittled the veteran journalist when he told her to “stop shaking [her] head” as he gave yet another circuitous response to one of her questions. The incident partly inspired Black women to share the microaggressions they endure at work using the hashtag #BlackWomenAtWork.
The administration’s current secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, recently engaged in a back-and-forth on with Ryan on Twitter after Ryan called into question a photo of a pie Sanders posted and claimed was her own creation.
Ryan’s exclusion may have just been an early holiday present. With Trump’s continued war against news media, one can only imagine how awkward this festivity will be.