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The Cross Hall decorated with "The Nutcracker Suite" theme at the White House. Photo: Carolyn Kaster / AP

This year's annual White House Christmas party for members of the media is breaking tradition in several areas, including the time of day and who was invited, according to a Politico report. And unlike past presidents, Trump will not be posing with guests, and "may or may not mingle with the crowd."

The backdrop: The event is "an opportunity for the media and their guests to enjoy a reception at the White House," according to First Lady Melania Trump's director of communications, Stephanie Grisham. This year, it will have a far less festive air. CNN has said it will boycott the event due to President Trump's attacks — and in response Sarah Sanders tweeted, "finally, good news from CNN."

How Trump's party differs from previous years:

  • The party is on a Friday afternoon, whereas in previous years it has been in the evening, allowing guests to bring a significant other or a family member. Grisham said the time was "based on many schedules."
  • Only specific journalists were invited, as opposed to allowing invited outlets a certain number of slots they could fill. Various White House reporters were not invited this year, while they had been in years past.
  • There will only be one party this year, compared to Obama's two holiday parties every year.

Go deeper

Updated 27 mins ago - Economy & Business

Americans are super-sizing their holiday travel

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans are rushing back into holiday travel, and many are taking even longer trips now than they did before the pandemic began.

The big picture: After skipping Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings last year, many people are eager to maximize this year's celebrations with friends and family. And flexible remote working arrangements make that easier than ever.

Updated 27 mins ago - Energy & Environment

Pity the "green" car buyer

Expand chart
Data: IHS Markit Data; Note: Chart: Thomas Oide/Axios

Americans are more open than ever to trading in their gas cars for electrified vehicles — but they're flummoxed by the confusing array of green options arriving in showrooms.

Why it matters: Getting up to speed on the differences among hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery-electric vehicles will be a challenge for car buyers — and salespeople, too — as we transition away from gas-powered vehicles over the next decade.

Updated 28 mins ago - Technology

America's attention recession

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

New data shows that there's been a pullback from the historically high levels of media audience growth — and in some cases consumption — during 2020, pointing to signs of a slight "attention recession" in the past few months.

The big picture: The COVID-19 pandemic drove a once-in-a-lifetime surge in the attention economy online, but the gradual return of normal life in many places — along with media overload and exhaustion — has down-shifted consumption patterns.

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