Press Secretary Sarah Sanders confirmed on Wednesday evening that the media credentials for CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta had been revoked “until further notice.”
“I’ve just been denied entrance to the WH. Secret Service just informed me I cannot enter the WH grounds for my 8 p.m. hit,” he wrote in his tweet. He did not explain why he was barred entry at that point.
Later in the evening, Sanders elaborated why the White House revoked Acosta’s credentials.
“President Trump believes in a free press and expects and welcomes tough questions of him and his Administration,” Sanders posted on Twitter.
“We will, however, never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern…”
The press secretary was alluding to an incident in the White House today during a press briefing involving President Trump, when Acosta was trying to get an answer to a question he had asked, according to a previous report from the Inquisitr. A White House intern had tried to grab the microphone from Acosta, who was holding his arm out slightly, pointing his finger upward. While reaching for the mic, the intern’s and Acosta’s arms seem to touch briefly, seemingly accidentally, as shown on a video clip of the incident.
Acosta denied Sanders’s characterization of him “placing his hands on [the] young woman,” writing in another tweet that “this is a lie.”
The animosity between Trump and CNN, especially with White House correspondent Jim Acosta, has been well-documented, per a report from the Washington Post. Indeed, within the press briefing earlier today, Trump laid out a line of verbal attacks against Acosta, stating he was a “rude, terrible person,” according to NBC News.
Trump also repeated a claim of his during the press briefing, calling CNN and networks like it the “enemy of the people” once again.
It’s unclear what kind of repercussions may come about for the president for his behavior toward Acosta, and it’s also vague when Acosta may get his press credentials to enter the White House back, if ever.
CNN’s communications team responded to the revocation through a tweet it sent out on Wednesday night after it happened. In her explanation, the CNN Communications account stated the following.
“Press Secretary Sarah Sanders lied. She provided fraudulent accusations and cited an incident that never happened. This unprecedented decision is a threat to our democracy and the country deserves better.”
The account added that Jim Acosta “has our full support.”