White House claims right to exclude 'grandstanding' Acosta

Thursday, November 15, 2018

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WASHINGTON, DC, USA (AP) — President Donald Trump's Administration is trying to fend off a legal challenge from CNN and other outlets over the revocation of journalist Jim Acosta's White House “hard pass”.

US District Court Judge Timothy Kelly heard arguments yesterday afternoon from lawyers representing CNN and the Justice Department. The news network is seeking an immediate restraining order that would force the White House to return Acosta's press credentials — which grant reporters as-needed access to the 18-acre complex.

Kelly said he would announce his decision tomorrow.

Acosta has repeatedly clashed with Trump and press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in briefings over the last two years. But the dynamic devolved into a near-shouting match during a combative press conference last week following midterm elections in which Republicans lost control of the House of Representatives.

Acosta refused to give up a microphone when the president said he didn't want to hear anything more from him. Trump called Acosta a “rude, terrible person”.

The White House quickly announced that Acosta's White House access would be revoked.

The CNN lawsuit calls the revocation “an unabashed attempt to censor the press and exclude reporters from the White House who challenge and dispute the President's point of view”.

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