White House press secretary Sarah Sanders fired back at CNN reporter Jim Acosta after CNN announced its lawsuit against President Donald Trump.
In the lawsuit announced Tuesday, CNN claimed the revocation of Acosta’s White House credentials violated CNN and Acosta’s First Amendment and Fifth Amendment rights.
“If left unchallenged, the actions of the White House would create a dangerous chilling effect for any journalist who covers our elected officials,” CNN claimed.
This morning, CNN filed a lawsuit against @realDonaldTrump and top aides. The White House has violated CNN and @Acosta‘s First Amendment rights of freedom of the press and Fifth Amendment rights to due process. Complaint: https://t.co/43oX6L8xA7 pic.twitter.com/RvJ0Cgh6oi
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) November 13, 2018
Sanders, who has already meticulously explained why Acosta’s press pass was suspended, responded to the lawsuit in a statement.
“This is just more grandstanding from CNN, and we will vigorously defend against this lawsuit,” Sanders said in the statement. (The statement can be read in full
Sanders is right. This move from CNN seems like grandstanding. The network is probably just trying to help its embarrassing ratings.
“CNN, who has nearly 50 additional hard pass holders, and Mr. Acosta is no more or less special than any other media outlet or reporter with respect to the First Amendment,” Sanders’ statement continued.
This comment probably hurt Acosta’s feelings because he is known to be very sensitive to criticism.
However, Sanders is right once again. Aside from his own relentless self-promotion, there is nothing special about Acosta and any other CNN reporter would likely do the job just as well as he did.
CNN’s argument that Trump violated the network’s First Amendment rights is flimsy because they have many competent reporters with White House press credentials.
— ErikWemple (@ErikWemple) November 13, 2018
Sanders’ statement went on to explain how Acosta’s behavior disrupts the kind of briefings the White House wants to hold for the benefit of news organizations and the Americans who rely on them for information.
“The White House cannot run an orderly and fair press conference when a reporter acts this way, which is neither appropriate nor professional,” Sanders said. “The First Amendment is not served when a single reporter, of more than 150 present, attempts to monopolize the floor.”
Acosta is known for his disorderly conduct. In July, Acosta refused to leave the Oval Office during a photo opportunity, which led to a White House staffer forcing him out.
Imagine if every reporter acted like Acosta. It would be complete chaos and nobody would get the chance to ask their questions.
It’s good that Sanders and the White House are standing up to this flimsy lawsuit and ensuring that future news conferences are orderly and fair.
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