USA Today Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page said that the Obama administration has been "more dangerous to the press" than "any administration in American history" on Monday.
"This administration has been more restrictive and more challenging to the press, more dangerous to the press, really, than any administration in American history," Page said. "In terms of legal investigations…and I think access to the White House has just gotten worse and worse."
Page said the Obama administration's bullying and intimidation of journalists has severe implications for the future of political journalism in the United States.
"I'm worried that whatever happens with this administration, that's the new floor for the next administration," Page said. "And that we'll never regain access, ability to do reporting, ability to do our job unless we just constantly fight the battle."
Former White House photographer Brooks Kraft said the press made some gains after pushing back against the Obama administration in December 2013.
"We said, ‘Hey, President Obama, at the beginning of your administration you said this was going to be the most transparent administration. This is not transparent,'" Kraft said. "‘It's not transparent for you guys to provide the content.'"
Page noted that the very function of a free press is being threatened.
"We have a role in our democracy and we can't do it if the president and his administration don't recognize it," Page said.