National Press Club

A note to NPC members on Jan. 19th private client inaugural event

Jeff Ballou | January 23, 2017

Fellow members,

I've received some questions about the event that was held January 19 at the Club, a pre-inaugural rental characterized by the organizers as the Deploraball, and wanted to follow up with you. As you know, the Club has served as a venue for election-related events and parties for many years, held to celebrate incoming presidents from both parties.

I want to assure you that in cooperation with the organizers and security personnel, the Club ensured the safety of all members, guests, protesters and attendees. The attendees of the event comported themselves as we would expect any attendees of a formal event to behave. Many of them thanked Club staff for their hard work as they left.

This Club believes very strongly in defending freedom of speech. We believe in the laws that make our country strong and protect our press. We are proud to have our Club headquartered in Washington, DC, where it is illegal to deny someone an accommodation based on political beliefs, the same law that says a bakery can't deny an LGBTQ couple a wedding cake.
Michael Moore and Ashley Judd, Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood and Gloria Steinem (who has her own significant chapter in NPC history), have appeared at the Club over the weekend via private bookings. People from various parts of the political spectrum continue to rent the club within our guidelines unabated.

Allowing a client doesn't make us a host. It doesn't align us with their views, nor makes us complicit in endorsing a particular philosophy. It makes us willing to learn so we can be better informed colleagues. It’s also in many cases, being compliant with the law. We are always willing to listen to member suggestions. Just write us to suggestions@press.org, and together we'll keep building a Club of champions.

Thank you.

Jeff