Fox News Sides With CNN on Jim Acosta-Trump Flap

CNN journalist Jim Acosta does a standup before a new conference with President Donald Trump in the East Room of the White House in Washington. CNN sued the Trump administration Tuesday demanding that corresponden

"I think there's very little to be lost by pursuing this", said Douglas E. Mirell, a specialist in the First Amendment for Greenberg Glusker.

US Justice Department lawyer James Burnham echoed comments filed in a legal brief earlier in the day for the administration, saying that "there is no First Amendment right to access the White House" and that the rationale behind the decision was that Acosta "disrupted" a news conference last week.

They began sparring after Acosta asked Trump about the caravan of migrants heading from Latin America to the southern U.S. border. Acosta told the president that it was not an invasion and that Trump knew it, but chose to demonize immigrants.

The 23-page memo argues that the "president and his staff have absolute discretion over which journalists they grant interviews to, as well as over which journalists they acknowledge at press events". Acosta would not agree to disagree.

"It would be awful for the public, and for our democracy, if reporters questioning the president had to operate under an ever-present threat of this kind of retaliation", Jaffer said.

Acosta tried to ask a follow-up question as a White House intern tried to grab his microphone but was told by Trump, "That's enough". Acosta (still with the mic) started to ask if he was anxious about some aspect of the Russian Federation investigation. When Trump called on someone else, Acosta held onto a microphone and asked another question.

The president called Acosta "a rude, awful person" and said his employer "should be ashamed of itself having you work for them".

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"We stand in strong solidarity with CNN for the right to full access for our journalists as part of a free and unfettered press", Fox News President Jay Wallace said in July.

Omarosa's got an opinion on how the battle will play out for CNN and Acosta. How do they know? If they can convince a judge of the same notion, they will win.

Forty years later, a court will be considering constitutionally protected press freedoms.

The filing was the government's legal response to CNN and Jim Acosta's lawsuit over the recent suspension of Acosta's press pass.

Frustrated by Acosta's criticism of a campaign ad, Trump finally said: "You should let me run the country and you should run CNN". Well, they certainly have shown that Donald Trump often has a low opinion of CNN. But the rest? There's no there, there.

The White House suspended his credentials later that day, with press secretary Sarah Sanders accusing Acosta of putting his hands on the intern who was forcefully trying to take the microphone away from him.

Others including NBC News, The Associated Press, Bloomberg, Gannet, The New York Times, USA Today and Washington Post are supporting CNN's lawsuit.

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Both CNN and Acosta are plaintiffs.

Acosta has a reputation as a showboat among some of his press corps colleagues, and he has clashed several times with Trump since the president took office. But the two have supported each other in the past when it comes to press access.

Experts said the White House would likely be on the losing end if it decides to fight the litigation in court rather than restoring Acosta's credentials, the result the lawsuit seeks.

CNN is alleging that this abrupt action violated due process rights. The appellate court affirmed the lower court judgment "requiring notice, opportunity to be heard, and a final written statement of the bases of denial". Pressed by the judge, however, Burnham conceded that he knew of no other case in which a president had stripped a reporter of his White House credentials. Meanwhile, the White House claims it has "broad discretion" to curb press access to the president in CNN case.

The network's lawyer, Theodore Boutrous, contended that Acosta was being singled out for his body of work, not his alleged rudeness during a press conference.

A hearing is scheduled for 3:30 Washington federal court.

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