Emails obtained by The Daily Caller show that a spokesman at the Centers for Disease Control told an agency scientist to lie to a reporter to avoid an interview, and that a senior press official at the agency “gets very worked up” by interview requests from conservative media outlets.
The freeze-out came in response to an inquiry into a study released in February by the CDC, which found a drastic, 43-percent decline in obesity rates for children between 2 and 5 years old.
The New York Times touted the findings in a front page article, and both the CDC and first lady Michelle Obama tied the results to her Let’s Move! anti-obesity campaign.
“Karen gets very worked up whenever conservative outlets want to do interviews,” wrote Jeffrey Lancashire, a spokesman for the National Center of Health Statistics, a part of the CDC, in an email to Cynthia Ogden, the lead scientist on the study.
Lancashire was referring to Karen Hunter, a senior press officer at the federal agency.
“But that has caused us trouble in the past,” Lancashire continued, “because it raises unnecessary flags as to why we’re doing some interviews but not others.”