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March 16, 2011

Obama's "sunshine" award

Who are the groups behind the mysterious 2:55 p.m. Sunshine Week award President Obama is getting today at the White House?

The Oval Office event is listed on the president's daily schedule with no further explanation - and in the interests of openness and transparency it should be noticed that the event is not fully open to the press but not fully closed either. There will be a "pool spray at the top," meaning photographers can take pictures and reporters can shout out questions with no promise of an answer.

Obama has gotten mixed reviews about his promises to create the most open, transparent administration.

The White House, responding to a request for more information, said it's an award from organizers of the Freedom of Information Day Conference and that five transparency advocates will present it: Gary Bass, Founder and Executive Director of OMB Watch; Tom Blanton, Director of the National Security Archive at the George Washington University; Danielle Brian, Executive Director of the Project on Government Oversight; Lucy Dalglish, the Executive Director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press; Patrice McDermott, Director of Open The Government.

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