White House must restore CNN reporter's press pass, judge rules
- Author: Rogelio Becker Nov 17, 2018,
Nov 17, 2018, 0:46
U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Kelly ordered the White House to immediately return Acosta's credentials.
Pressing First and Fifth Amendment claims, the suit contended that the White House revocation itself violated the First Amendment guarantee respecting the rights of Mr. Acosta and CNN to report the news.
Ultimately, Kelly says CNN successfully proved it will suffer irreparable harm as a result of the administration taking away Acosta's pass.
This was also granted on a limited basis and was not on First Amendment ground, but the Fifth Amendment's right to due process.
The White House suspended Acosta's press pass following a heated exchange between the CNN journalist and Donald Trump at a press conference.
"While this narcissistic approach may serve plaintiff's self-interests as entertainers or media figures and the network that profits therefrom, they do not serve the interests of the forum", OANN said.
"Great day for journalism and the First Amendment!", said CNN's lawyers while Acosta emerged from the courthouse, thanked his colleagues in the media and the judge and then closed off with "let's get back to work!"
It's very possible the White House drops the case and instead comes up with some level of varying standards that could again be challenged by the press in court.
Trump sat down with the "Fox News Sunday" host on Friday for a wide-ranging discussion - the first time Wallace has interviewed Trump since he took office.
"If the president wants to exclude all reporters from the White House grounds, he clearly has the discretion to do that", Burnham said.
But in a statement, she also appeared to view the temporary ruling as a victory: "Today, the court made clear that there is no absolute First Amendment right to access the White House".
Acosta, CNN's chief White House correspondent, was back in the afternoon.
The White House may have an interest in controlling its press facility, the judge noted, but he said a violation of constitutional rights is contrary to the public interest.
He also agreed with CNN's argument that the White House did not provide due process.
The judge said the government could not say who initially made a decision to revoke Acosta's hard pass.
Exit quotation from Andrew Egger, recognizing the real victor today: "Acosta's tedious furrowed-brow posturing and spotlight-hogging and his fixation on Trump's meanness to the press are all catnip to a president who loves nothing more than to tell his fans that that's what journalists are all about". Its broader lawsuit concerns whether the White House's decision to revoke his press pass was unconstitutional.
On Tuesday, Sanders accused Acosta in a written statement of being unprofessional by trying to dominate the questioning at the news conference.
In a filing on Wednesday, the Trump administration said they had a compelling reason to pull his pass - that he had disrupted the press event after refusing to yield the floor to another reporter.