CNN sues Trump over reporter's White House credentials

Trump told Acosta to sit down and demanded someone take away his microphone. Image AFPMore

Trump told Acosta to sit down and demanded someone take away his microphone. Image AFPMore

The White House has violated CNN and Jim Acosta's First Amendment rights of freedom of the press and Fifth Amendment rights to due process. After Mr. Acosta asked the President two questions-each of which the President answered-he physically refused to surrender a White House microphone to an intern, so that other reporters might ask their questions.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the lawsuit was "just more grandstanding from CNN" and stressed that CNN "has almost 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".

"CNN, who has almost 50 additional 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 continued.

The White House Correspondents' Association backed the lawsuit, filed in Washington, DC, district court.

"Acosta may have been an irritant to the president, but he was hardly a danger to [Trump]", he said.

CNN said Acosta was given no warning of the action, and no recourse to appeal it. Acosta traveled to Paris to cover Trump's visit there this weekend and, although given permission by the French government to cover a news event, the Secret Service denied him entrance, the company said. "You are a rude, awful person". You're a very rude person.

CNN, who has almost 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. Meanwhile, Trump had just fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions and installed his chief of staff, Matthew Whitaker, who has a rich history of criticizing the Mueller investigation, at the top of the Justice Department.

CNN asked for an injunction to immediately reinstate Acosta, as well as a hearing on the larger issue of barring a reporter.

It's what Jim, and all of his colleagues who cover the White House and the administration, do with integrity and professionalism.

Acosta insisted on speaking over the president, and when a White House intern attempted to retrieve the microphone from Acosta, the CNN reporter refused to let go.

The network alleges this violates its and Acosta's constitutional rights.

"If left unchallenged, the actions of the White House would create a unsafe chilling effect for any journalist who covers our elected officials". White House officials were free to complain to me or my employer about my coverage and occasionally they did. According to the complaint, CNN made several attempts to reach a resolution with the Trump administration, threatening to sue if Acosta's credential was not returned.

He signed a sworn declaration in support of Acosta, in which he characterized the White House's actions as unprecedented.

Following the suspension of Acosta's credentials, reporters asked Trump about the CNN correspondent, prompting the president to castigate him as "a rude, awful person". This latest tiff with Acosta is just another skirmish to fall in the president's favor, even if - or maybe especially if - Acosta is able to return to the White House.

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