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Kayleigh McEnany Slams Jim Acosta During Heated White House Briefing: 'This Isn't a Cable News Segment'

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The usually polite disagreement of a White House media briefing grew very heated Friday after CNN reporter Jim Acosta sought to attack White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany over President Donald Trump’s recent satirical video tweets mocking CNN.

Acosta opened his round of questions by asking about McEnany’s attendance at Saturday’s Trump rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and whether she and other White House officials would wear a mask at the rally.

“It’s a personal choice. I won’t be wearing a mask. I can’t speak for my colleagues,” she said.

Acosta then jabbed at McEnany.

“And why won’t you wear a mask? Is it sort of a personal political statement? Is it because the president would be disappointed in you if you don’t wear a mask? Why is that?” he said.

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“It’s a personal — it’s a personal decision. I’m tested regularly. I feel that it’s safe for me not to be wearing a mask, and I’m in compliance with CDC guidelines, which are recommended but not required,” she said.



Acosta then moved on to Trump’s satirical tweets, one of which was labeled as “manipulated media” by Twitter. The videos mocked how CNN would have covered a story to paint the president with a negative brush regardless of the actual content.

“Why is the president sharing fake videos on Twitter about two toddlers who are obviously showing a lot of love for one another?” Acosta asked. “It seems as though he’s exploiting children to make some sort of crass political point.”

“He was making a point about CNN, specifically,” McEnany responded. “He was making a point that CNN has regularly taken him out of context. That, in 2019, CNN misleadingly aired a clip from one viewpoint repeatedly to falsely accuse the Covington boys of being, quote, ‘students in MAGA gear harassing a Native American elder.’ That’s a harassing video, a misleading video about children that had really grave consequences for their futures.”

And the battle between them took off.

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“So you’re saying it’s OK to exploit two toddlers hugging one another on a sidewalk to make some sort of political point? I mean, as you know, the president has described members of the press as ‘fake news’ during the course of this administration. When you share fake videos like that, doesn’t that make you fake news?” Acosta asked.

“I think the president was making a satirical point that was quite funny if you go and actually watch the video. I think he was making a –” McEnany said as Acosta kept interrupting.

“The point is that it was a play on CNN repeatedly taking the president out of context, like the time when you guys had a chyron that read, ‘Trump slams some illegal immigrants: They’re animals.’ Well, guess what? The people he called animals were MS-13 illegal immigrants who regularly mutilate people in this country,” she said. “Those things are entirely misleading.”

Do you agree with Kayleigh McEnany?

Acosta then tried to attack Trump’s word choices until McEnany cut him off.

“That’s an absurd attempt to justify the misleading headlines that are regularly on your network,” McEnany said, having to speak over Acosta. “Like I was just walking in, watching CNN as they lauded the quote, ‘rallies in the streets.'”

Acosta continued to hector McEnany as she tried to speak.

“You gotta let me finish, Jim. This isn’t a cable news segment,” she said. “I’m answering your question right now from the White House podium.”

McEnany kept talking as Acosta tried to interrupt.

“When I walk out here, Jim, and I see on your — I see on your network celebratory headlines about the rallies and the protests outside — you actually said protests and rallies. So, in light of the protests, if these gatherings happen in light of a protest or a rally, as you say, that rally is to be condoned, but the not the president’s rally,” she said.

McEnany then read from a CNN story that extolled protesters hugging.

“You celebrate hugging in the context of a protest. But at a Trump rally, where we celebrate historic-low African-American unemployment, criminal justice reform, HBCUs, that rally is not allowed,” she said.

“You also chant ‘build the wall’ and ‘lock her up’ and,” Acosta interjected.

“Because guess what, Jim? It doesn’t fit the ideological agenda of CNN,” McEnany finished.

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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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