Alex Edelman- Pool/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump is considering yet another shakeup of his administration, preparing to remove Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and looking at possible replacements for Chie…
iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — President Donald Trump placed full blame for his canceled visit to a World War I cemetery in France over the weekend on the Secret Service, claiming that he suggested driving after it was deemed unsafe to take the presi…
iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — CNN and its chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta filed suit Tuesday against President Donald Trump, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, the president’s chief of staff John Kelly and the U.S. Secret Service, among others, over the suspension of Acosta’s WHite House press credentials and demanded they be returned.
“The wrongful revocation of these credentials violates CNN and Acosta’s First Amendment rights of freedom of the press, and their Fifth Amendment rights to due process,” CNN’s communications team said in a press release.
In the complaint, filed in D.C. District Court, lawyers for CNN argued the “revocation of Acosta’s credentials is only the beginning.”
“This severe and unprecedented punishment is the culmination of years of hostility by President Trump against CNN and Acosta based on the contents of their reporting — an unabashed attempt to censor the press and exclude reporters from the White House who challenge and dispute the President’s point of view,” CNN’s lawyers wrote in the court documents.
The president “lacks the authority to quash” the First Amendment, the lawyers wrote, and access to the White House cannot be denied arbitrarily.
According to the lawsuit, CNN and Acosta aim to “enforce this constitutional commitment, restore Acosta’s well-deserved press credentials, and ensure that the press remains free to question the government and to report the business of the nation to the American people.”
“This is just more grandstanding from CNN, and we will vigorously defend against this lawsuit, Sanders responded Tuesday. “CNN, who has nearly 50 additional hard pass holders, and Mr. Acosta is no more or less special than any other media outlet or reporter with respect to the First Amendment,” Sanders said in a statement. “After Mr. Acosta asked the President two questions—each of which the President answered—he physically refused to surrender a White House microphone to an intern, so that other reporters might ask their questions. This was not the first time this reporter has inappropriately refused to yield to other reporters.” “The White House cannot run an orderly and fair press conference when a reporter acts this way, which is neither appropriate nor professional,” Sanders continued. “The First Amendment is not served when a single reporter, of more than 150 present, attempts to monopolize the floor. If there is no check on this type of behavior it impedes the ability of the President, the White House staff, and members of the media to conduct business.”
White House Correspondents’ Association President Olivier Knox issued a statement supporting CNN’s legal move, saying the White House should not have taken away Acosta’s credentials in the first place.
“Revoking access to the White House complex amounted to disproportionate reaction to the events of last Wednesday. We continue to urge the Administration to reverse course and fully reinstate CNN’s correspondent. The President of the United States should not be in the business of arbitrarily picking the men and women who cover him,” Knox said.
The White House suspended press access for Acosta after he and Trump engaged in a heated exchange during a press conference on Wednesday, one day after the midterm elections.
Acosta began by asking about a caravan of people from Central America the president spoke of frequently before the midterm election.
“Honestly, I think you should let me run the country, you run CNN, and if you did it well, your ratings would be much better,” Trump told Acosta.
Acosta then asked the president a question about the Russia investigation. After a back-and-forth, the president responded: “That’s enough.” A White House intern attempted to take the microphone from Acosta, who kept a firm grip and, while gesticulating, his arm came into contact with the intern’s arm, according to video of the exchange.
“Pardon me, ma’am,” Acosta told the intern during the encounter.
In contentious exchange on migrant caravan, Russian investigation, Pres. Trump tells CNN’s Jim Acosta, “I think you should let me run the country, you run CNN…Put down the mic.”
— ABC News (@ABC) November 7, 2018
“I tell you what. CNN should be ashamed of itself, having you working for them,” Trump said at the news conference. “You are a rude, terrible person. You shouldn’t be working for CNN.”
When Acosta returned to the White House later that evening, the Secret Service barred him from entering and took his credentials.
In a statement, Sanders said Acosta was banned from the grounds because he placed “his hands on” a White House intern during the press conference in the East Wing earlier in the day.
“President Trump believes in a free press and expects and welcomes tough questions of him and his Administration,” Sanders said. “We will, however, never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern.”
CNN quickly and plainly called Sanders’ explanation a lie. “She provided fraudulent accusations and cited an incident that never happened,” CNN said in a statement.
Many journalists came to Acosta’s defense, calling the suspension of his credentials a “very bad sign” stemming from a fear of tough questioning, and tweeting photos of the exchange.
Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
Michelle Obama says Malia and Sasha are ‘thriving,’ thanks Jenna and Barbara Bush and Chelsea Clinton who ‘always had their backs’
ABC News(NEW YORK) — Former first lady Michelle Obama said her two daughters, Malia and Sasha Obama, are “thriving” post-White House and said she will always love a trio of former first children for helping her daughters.
“Let me just say this out loud in public: I am so proud of those little girls,” Obama said of Malia and Sasha in an exclusive interview Tuesday with Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts. “They have managed this situation with poise and grace and they are normal and kind and smart and friendly and open.”
Sasha, 17, will graduate from high school in Washington, D.C., this spring, and Malia, 20, is a sophomore at Harvard.
“They are great. They are thriving,” Obama said of her daughters.
Malia and Sasha were just little girls living in Chicago in 2008, when their father, Barack Obama, was elected president. They moved to the White House and went through middle school and high school under the scrutiny of being first children.
Obama credited Jenna Bush Hager, Barbara Bush and Chelsea Clinton with helping Malia and Sasha through their White House years.
“I love those girls,” she said of the Bush sisters and Clinton. “I will love them forever for what kind of support they provided to my daughters throughout that.”
Bush Hager and Bush, who turn 37 later this month, welcomed Malia and Sasha to the White House in 2009 with a letter that gave them advice like finding loyal friends, sliding down the banister of the White House solarium for fun and taking part in every White House engagement and trip they could.
When Malia and Obama left the White House in 2016, the Bush sisters wrote them another letter welcoming them into what they called the “rarified club” of former first children, describing it as a club with membership that Malia and Sasha didn’t seek and “one with no guidelines.”
“We have watched you grow from girls to impressive young women with grace and ease,” they wrote.
Obama, whose memoir, Becoming, was released Tuesday, thanked the Bush sisters and Clinton for not only personally sharing advice with Malia and Sasha, but also defending them publicly, even after the Obamas left the White House.
“They always had their backs,” she said. “[If] somebody went after them in the press, Jenna would get in there and say something. Chelsea would send a tweet out.”
Malia Obama’s private life, as a young woman, a college student, a private citizen, should not be your clickbait. Be better.
— Chelsea Clinton (@ChelseaClinton) November 24, 2017
“That made a big, big difference,” Obama said.
Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
ABC News(CHICAGO) — Former first lady Michelle Obama, in an exclusive interview with ABC News’ Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts, said the results of the midterm elections were inspiring and addressed whether Hillary Clinton should run for off…
Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has some advice for the more than 100 women elected to join Congress after this historic midterm election cycle.
At least 110 women were elected to Congress — 84 Democrats and 14 R…