In court, United States government lawyers said there was no First Amendment right of access to the White House and that Acosta was penalised for acting rudely at the conference and not for his criticisms of the President.
CNN's lawyer argued in court on Wednesday that the White House violated Acosta's First Amendment right to free speech in revoking his credentials. "There must be decorum at the White House". "The White House is not prohibiting CNN from being in there".
He also criticised the Trump administration's decision, saying that the process was "so shrouded in mystery that the government could not tell me. who made the decision".
"Our honest thanks to all who have supported not just CNN, but a free, strong and independent American press". He's the ideal foil to Trump, the flawless face for the administration's constant campaign against the "fake news media".
Frustrated by Acosta's criticism of a campaign ad, Trump finally said: "You should let me run the country and you should run CNN".
The journalist, who is CNN's chief White House correspondent, was barred from the White House after a contentious press conference with President Donald Trump. At Trump's post-midterms press conference, Acosta pressed the president on his characterization of the migrant caravan as an "invasion". So we're setting up a certain standard which is what the court is requesting and always be fair to the press, always First Amendment, but that's the way it is. "While the suit is specific to CNN and Acosta, this could have happened to anyone".
The judge did not rule on the First Amendment question, though, because he found that Acosta's Fifth Amendment rights were likely violated as it appears he was given no due process.
Lindsay Walters may not be a well-known public figure, but she would certainly have been recognized in a room full of White House reporters.
CNN reporter Jim Acosta speaks with reporters outside of the US District courthouse.
Inside the courtroom, Fox News, the Associated Press and many other news organizations sided with CNN, saying the White House can not be allowed to use the threat of access to pressure reporters. Either way, total victory for Acosta in this case would simply mean that he'll continue to access the White House grounds. The judge said Mr. Acosta's credentials would be returned immediately and reactivated to allow him access to the White House. This legal conclusion could protect other reporters from retaliation by the administration.
Watch above, via Fox News.
"If the president wants to exclude all reporters from White House grounds he clearly has the authority to do that", said James Burnham, deputy assistant attorney general. But reporters must show respect, he said.
In particular, he has been enraged at the media for not giving him more positive coverage after winning the 2016 presidential election. But he said he wouldn't do something similar as president.
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