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.

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