A Washington, D.C. court has ruled that the White House has to restore CNN report Jim Acosta’s access to the building’s briefing room, but that doesn’t mean much.
Donald Trump says that even now, his staff is “writing up rules and regulations” for the press to follow, and that “people have to behave,” according to the BBC.
“If they don’t listen to the rules and regulations we’ll end up back in court and will win,” Trump said. “But more importantly, we’ll just leave, and then you won’t be very happy.”
“You can’t take three questions and four questions and just stand up and not sit down…Decorum. You have to practice decorum,” Trump said.
Donald Trump has often been accused of not exercising much decorum in his own day-to-day interactions with the media and elsewhere.
According to the judge, the White House violated Jim Acosta’s right to due process and freedom of speech, both of which are guaranteed in the Constitution of the United States.
Acosta’s White House press credentials were taken away after a press conference earlier this month. He refused to yield the floor while questioning Donald Trump at the event. A White House intern then attempted to take the microphone from Acosta.
Accounts vary about what happened next, and conflicting video evidence has been offered to present two sides of the same story. Many people say, and early video shows, that Acosta did not touch or manhandle the intern in any way.
The White House claims, however, that Acosta put his hands on the intern and this is why his press credentials were taken away. Later, a video that seemed to support this claim was released via White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders. Many believe this video was doctored, as it differs from other video evidence of the event.
According to Judge Timothy Kelly, the White House did not provide justification for taking Acosta’s credentials. He also said the whole thing was “so shrouded in mystery that the government could not tell me…who made the decision.”
USA: judge orders that Jim Acosta’s White House press pass be returned to him • Nov 16 2018 pic.twitter.com/oUJYhwqIJq— redball (@redball2) November 17, 2018
To be clear, the White House does have to grant Jim Acosta access to the press room. However, the White House is under no obligation to call on him so that he may ask questions.
So it seems pretty clear how the future is likely to play out when it comes to White House press briefings and Jim Acosta.
Acosta reports for CNN, which Donald Trump has called “fake news” many times. Acosta has said that he wants to go back to covering the White House and “the guy in there,” meaning Trump, according to the Sacramento Bee.
When Acosta arrived at the northwest gate of the White House on Friday, more than 50 members of the press corps were there to greet him.