Trump Invites Locals to White House for Off the Record Dinner to Pitch Agenda

By Kevin Eck 

WKYT political reporter and anchor Bill Bryant was one of 18 local reporters, representing six station groups, who got to have dinner with President Donald Trump Monday night.

The Lexington, Kentucky CBS affiliate says the dinner was “an effort to sell his national agenda ahead of his first budget address.”

The dinner included the three pictured Gray TV representatives, Bryant (left), Diane Larson (center) from WTVG in Toledo, who called it a “last minute invitation,” and Gray TV Washington Bureau Chief Jacqueline Policastro.

“The White House says it’s the first time local political reporters and anchors from around the country were brought in for a dinner with the President,” said Bryant.

“The dinner was held in the state dining room,” reports WTVG. “Vice President Mike Pence came in first and welcomed the reporters followed by President Trump who greeted each reporter and thanked them for coming.”

Also at the table were key White House staffers: Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Counselor Kellyanne Conway and Press Secretary Sean Spicer.

The president’s staff emphasized this was an off-the-record dinner, but the president did make a few on the record remarks as he talked about a wide range of topics ahead of his Tuesday night speech in front of the Joint Session of Congress.