Sarah Huckabee Sanders refuses to say media not 'enemy of the people'

Friday, 03 Aug, 2018

Things got heated in the White House press room today, where CNN's Jim Acosta put press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on the spot, asking her if she agreed with Donald Trump that the press were the "enemy of the people".

"I know that the invitation has been extended, but I don't believe a final decision has been made", press secretary Sarah Sanders said in response to a question at the daily press briefing.

CNN's Jim Acosta, who has become a lightning rod for anti-media sentiment and was loudly heckled during a Trump rally in Florida on Tuesday night, implored Sanders to break from the president, who first decried the press as the "enemy of the American people" previous year.

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Acosta, who has not only been the brunt of attacks coming from Trump supporters, but has been attacked multiple times by the president himself, fired back on Twitter, writing, "Hannity is a propagandist for profit, peddling lies every night".

While the 90-minute briefing was less than ten minutes away from wrapping up anyway, Acosta later tweeted that he walked "saddened" by a "shameful" performance.

Brian Flood covers the media for Fox News.

Sulzberger later issued a statement saying that he was concerned that the president had labelled the media an "enemy of the people" and that he warned that this "inflammatory language is contributing to a rise in threats against journalists and will lead to violence".

She went on to say the media have attacked her personally "on a number of occasions" before specifically calling out rhetoric she said aired on CNN.

"Morning Joe is a dead show with very few people watching and sadly, Fake News CNN is also doing poorly".

Sanders and Acosta have frequently sparred.

Mrs. Sanders said, noting that she is the first White House press secretary to require Secret Service protection.

Trump has increasingly used the term to escalate his criticism of the press.

On Thursday, the United Nations rapporteur for freedom of expression said Mr Trump's verbal attacks on the media run the risk of triggering real violence against journalists.

The move marks the latest step in the increasingly conflictual relationship between Mr Trump and the cable news network.

Trump's meeting with Putin was widely criticized by both Republican and Democratic lawmakers on Capitol Hill. I'm here to speak on behalf of the president.