CNN on Tuesday filed a federal lawsuit against President Donald Trump and various White House aides following the temporary suspension of Chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta’s “hard pass” media credential.
The administration stripped Acosta of his pass to enter the White House following President Donald Trump’s contentious news conference last week, where Acosta refused to give up a microphone when the president said he didn’t want to hear anything more from him.
BREAKING: CNN says it is suing President Trump and top Trump aides, alleging they have violated CNN correspondent Jim Acosta’s First Amendment rights of freedom of the press and Fifth Amendment rights to due process; requests court grant immediate return of Acosta’s press pass. pic.twitter.com/oyEQygb9Tq
— NBC News (@NBCNews) November 13, 2018
In response to the lawsuit, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement: “this is just more grandstanding from CNN, and we will vigorously defend against his lawsuit.”
NEW: Press sec. Sarah Sanders dismisses CNN suit over Jim Acosta’s White House press credentials as “just more grandstanding from CNN,” vowing to “vigorously defend against this lawsuit.” https://t.co/hJrjci8UgI pic.twitter.com/9hgh0qiNGN
— ABC News (@ABC) November 13, 2018
The White House Correspondents’ Association backed the lawsuit, filed in Washington, D.C., district court.
“The president of the United States should not be in the business of arbitrarily picking the men and women who cover him,” said Oliver Knox, president of the correspondents’ group.
CNN said Acosta was given no warning of the action, and no recourse to appeal it. Acosta traveled to Paris to cover Trump’s visit there this weekend and, although given permission by the French government to cover a news event, the Secret Service denied him entrance, the company said.
“Without this credential, a daily White House correspondent like Acosta effectively cannot do his job,” CNN’s lawsuit said.
CNN asked for an injunction to immediately reinstate Acosta, as well as a hearing on the larger issue of barring a reporter.
Acosta has been a polarizing figure even beyond the distaste that Trump and his supporters have for him. The Poynter Institute, a journalism think tank, editorialized last week that Acosta’s encounter with Trump at the news conference “was less about asking questions and more about making statements. In doing so, the CNN White House reporter gave President Donald Trump room to critique Acosta’s professionalism.”
Read the full lawsuit below:
CNN v Trump by on Scribd
The Associated Press contributed to this report.