Politics

Jim Acosta’s Press Pass Is Temporarily Returned: Nine Notable Media Reactions

After a judge ordered the White House to reinstate the controversial CNN reporter's credentials, Twitter exploded

A federal judge’s decision ordering the White House to temporarily and immediately reinstate controversial CNN reporter Jim Acosta’s press pass on Friday was met with varying degrees of celebration, consternation — and criticism.

The ruling was an initial victory for Acosta (pictured above) and CNN with a temporary injunction; the judge has yet to issue a final ruling on whether Acosta’s First Amendment rights were violated.

Instead, Judge Timothy J. Kelly, whom President Donald Trump appointed last year, ruled that White House officials had violated Acosta’s right to due process with the inconsistent reasoning behind their decision to yank his pass in the first place.

The White House pulled Acosta’s press credentials after his controversial conduct during a fiery briefing with Trump, in which Acosta initially sought to “challenge” the president by giving his own personal opinion on the Central American migrant caravan.

Trump eventually tried to move along to another reporter after allowing Acosta to ask a few questions.

But Acosta initially refused to give up the microphone to anyone else — and continued asking questions.

“That’s enough … Put down the mic,” Trump said.

Video clips also showed an unnamed female White House intern unsuccessfully attempting to reclaim the microphone from Acosta; he held onto it and pulled his arm back so that she could not take it from him.

But White House press secretary Sarah Sanders tweeted out a particular video, which apparently had been doctored to appear worse — showing Acosta swatting away the intern when she tried to take his microphone away.

Yet even in the undoctored video, Acosta can be seen trying to pushing away the intern’s arm as she tried to reach for the microphone after the president clearly said, “That’s enough” to Acosta.

Related: Why President Trump ‘Doesn’t Owe Anyone a Free Pass’ to the White House Briefing Room

The judge said Friday, “I want to emphasize the very limited nature of this ruling.”

Acosta celebrated Friday’s ruling outside the courthouse, saying, “I want to thank all of my colleagues in the press who supported us this week, and I want to thank the judge for the decision he made today.”

“Let’s go back to work!” Acosta added.

Sanders said in a statement following the initial ruling, “Today, the court made clear that there is no absolute First Amendment right to access the White House. In response to the court, we will temporarily reinstate the reporter’s hard pass.”

“We will also further develop rules and processes to ensure fair and orderly press conferences in the future,” Sanders warned. “There must be decorum at the White House.”

Here are nine of the most notable media member reactions to the temporary reinstatement of Acosta’s press pass:

1.) Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer, now a Fox News contributor, tweeted, “Next move is Acosta’s. Let’s see if he learned anything from this. Will he keep giving his personal opinions? Will he keep asking four questions without yielding the mic?”

2.) Ana Navarro, a Friday guest host for ABC News’ “The View,” said on the show, “I think what we are seeing, in this case, is the Constitution work the way it’s supposed to. We are seeing checks and balances and why it is so important to have co-equal, independent branches of government that check each other and balance each other — which is where my Republican Party has failed abjectly in Congress.”

“They’ve looked the other way as Donald Trump has abused power. But you know what, man … is president grumpy man baby gonna be mad today!” Navarro added.

3.) The Daily Caller’s Amber Athey tweeted, “FWIW, I have a hard time understand [sic] how a WH press pass is a right and not a privilege. But quickest/easiest solution to this is probably for WH to move on and refuse to call on Acosta at any future briefings.”

“The same people who say the WH can’t pick and choose which reporters have credentials were livid (and rightfully so) when Infowars, Gateway Pundit got passes. Not comparing CNN to those, but WH clearly has power to choose who has access to WH grounds,” Athey added.

4.) BuzzFeed News reporter Steven Perlberg wondered on Twitter, “We’re gonna have a constitutional crisis because of Jim Acosta’s press pass aren’t we.”

5.) Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sanders’ father and the current host of Fox News’ “Huckabee,” tweeted, “What would federal judge do if Acosta ‘challenged’ him in his courtroom and argued and wouldn’t shut up when judge told him to and refused to give up mic when bailiff tried to retrieve it? Asking for a friend. And for half of America.”

6.) Breitbart News Tonight host Joel Pollak tweeted, “The @Acosta ruling vindicates my position. I fully support his right to act like an a** in front of the world and to discredit @CNN as a news source. I can’t wait until he starts winning awards and honorary doctorates and Hollywood makes a movie about his bravery. Bravo Founders!”

7.) Co-host Whoopi Goldberg of “The View” said on the show that the White House “can continue to do and conduct business as they wish, and I’m sure they will … But you can’t poop on the Constitution.”

8.) Radio host Buck Sexton tweeted, “Jim Acosta wasn’t barred from the White House. He just had to go through the inconvenience of getting daily passes like … the vast majority of people who are not White House employees who visit the WH.”

9.) “CNN Newsroom” co-anchors Jim Sciutto and Poppy Harlow even hailed the ruling as saving the U.S. from becoming China.

“I have always been proud to call Jim Acosta a colleague and a friend … This is not about him. This is about press freedom and he will go back to work today,” Sciutto said. “The only other personal experience I had of this was in China, where China rejected and overturned and took away press credentials because they didn’t like the questions asked or the coverage of the stories.”

Harlow warned, “You don’t want to get even close to that.”

Check out the video below:

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