Ricketts creates credential system for media covering events

Ricketts
FILE - Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts speaks in Lincoln, Neb., Monday, July 20, 2020. Ricketts vetoed a bill Monday, Aug. 17, 2020 that would have prohibited prison officials from blocking the view of execution witnesses before the condemned inmate is declared dead, signaling that they're willing to repeat the much-criticized step in a future execution. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

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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