WH Warns Acosta They'll Strip Press Pass Again Once Restraining Order Expires

Saul Bowman
November 19, 2018

The White House sent a letter to CNN's chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta, informing him that when a temporary restraining order runs out, he will once again be denied access to press briefings, CNN's Brian Stelter reported.

CNN's Jim Acosta is reporting at the White House again after a judge ruled that the Trump administration overstepped the law in revoking his access.

Since the judge criticized the government for not following due process before banning Acosta on November 7, the new letter looks like an effort to establish a paper trail that will empower the administration to boot Acosta again at the end of the month.

The network slammed the plan in a statement.

CNN responded with a statement on Sunday, condemning the White House for "continuing to violate the First and 5th Amendments of the Constitution".

President Donald Trump watches as a White House aide reaches to take away a microphone from CNN journalist Jim Acosta during a news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington.

The White House earlier reinstated the CNN reporter's status following a temporary injunction by a US District Court lasting 14 days.

Trump told Fox News he had numerous ideas for dealing with Acosta's confrontational brand of questioning, which has often led to combative encounters at news conferences.


Later that same day, the White House sent Acosta a formal letter outlining a "preliminary decision" to suspend his pass. "I want to thank the judge for the decision he made today". "It's not a big deal".

The White House called the lawsuit "grandstanding" and said CNN has almost 50 other journalists who can cover the White House, and Mr. Acosta's access is not critical to the cause of press freedom.

It said the White House expected to make its final decision on Acosta's credentials by 3pm local time on Friday. On November 16 in response to a lawsuit from the network, a judge ordered the pass restored to Acosta.

"The First Amendment interests as recognized in Sherrill were not vested merely in publications or agencies; they were liberties of the individual journalists themselves", Kelly said, as excerpted by Wemple.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders said the administration will "develop rules and processes to ensure fair and orderly press conferences in the future".

"We'll have rules of decorum", Trump said.

Asked by Fox News' Wallace why he even called on Acosta at news conferences if he believed him so rude, Trump said he had asked Sanders the same thing. Trump said. "I mean, with this stuff, you never know what's going to happen".

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