The decision ends a three-year tradition of Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, who have in the past invited top staffers and journalists to their Naval Observatory home for the summer event. Previous parties have created great photo ops, including an epic Super Soaker fight. Past invited guests have included CNN's Wolf Blitzer and MSNBC's Chris Matthews.
An official explanation for Biden's decision to cancel the annual summer bash has not yet been given, though conservative blogs were quick to suggest that the scandals currently putting the administration on defense must have something to do with it.
The event itself prompted self-reflection among reporters in the past. In 2010, The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder wondered "does an afternoon of leisure with senior administration officials violate journalistic ethics?" His answer: Not really.