Trump Administration Sued For Revoking Press Credentials From CNN Correspondent In ‘War With The Press’

Brian Karem gets into a shouting match with Sebastian Gorka at the White House.
Alex Wong / Getty Images

The Trump administration is facing a battle in what is being called Donald Trump’s “war with the press.”

This week, the administration announced that Playboy writer and CNN correspondent Brian Karem would have his press credentials revoked for one month after a verbal spat with former Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka at an event for conservative social media figures last month. On Tuesday, Karem decided to fight the decision in court.

As The Hill reported, attorney Ted Boutrous filed a lawsuit in Washington, D.C., federal court claiming that the decision violated Karem’s First Amendment and Fifth Amendment rights. Both Donald Trump and White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham are named in the suit, which is seeking the immediate return of Karem’s hard press pass and his access to the White House grounds restored.

“We are confident that the Administration’s latest punitive and lawless action against a journalist will not stand, and we look forward to our day in court,” Boutrous said in a statement posted on GibsonDunn.com.

Karem had gotten into an argument with Gorka at Trump’s social media summit in July, with reports indicating that both men shouted at each other. It was not clear what, if any, punishment the former Trump adviser Gorka may have faced from the president’s administration.

Karem has gained a reputation for forcefully challenging Donald Trump and the White House on misleading or false statements, often drawing the ire of former press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

The Trump administration’s decision to revoke Karem’s pass garnered controversy, with The Guardian noting that the act was seen as a direct attack on the press.

“The Trump administration has fired another shot in its war with the U.S. press,” the British newspaper noted.

This is not the first time the Trump administration has faced a legal challenge after revoking the press pass of a critical reporter. It had previously revoked the pass of CNN correspondent Jim Acosta after claiming that he had been rough with a staff member and resisted an intern’s attempt to take a microphone during a press event. As The Washington Post noted, the White House shared footage of the event that appeared doctored to make it seem as if Acosta was aggressive in his actions with the intern, but video from the event showed that the Trump administration’s claims were potentially untrue.

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Brian Karem’s lawsuit was expected as the reporter had threatened to file suit against the Trump administration after being warned of the coming press pass revocation.