White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders explained the White House will be creating “standard practices” for reporters at press conferences moving forward, with the “basic minimum” being “if certain reporters like Jim Acosta can’t be adults, then CNN needs to send somebody in there who can be.”
CNN’s chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta arrived back to the White House on Friday after a judge ordered for his credentials to be temporarily returned.
Following a heated exchange between Acosta and the president at a recent press conference, the White House suspended his credentials — and CNN fired back by filing a lawsuit.
At the hearing over the CNN lawsuit, U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly said there was no due process in taking away Acosta’s hard pass and added that Sanders’ initial remark about Acosta touching the White House intern who tried to take away his microphone was “likely untrue and at least partly based on evidence that was of questionable accuracy.”
Appearing on Fox News’ “Hannity,” Sanders reiterated her frustration with Acosta’s credentials being restored after how he previously acted at the White House.
Speaking with her father and former Governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee on the show, Sanders explained that the Trump administration supports freedom of the press, but “freedom of the press doesn’t mean freedom to be disruptive, freedom to be rude, freedom to interrupt.”
Sanders added that the White House sent a letter to CNN explaining the “missteps” Acosta made during the previous press conference:
“The judge, I think, was actually very clear that the White House has the ability say, ‘You can’t come in.’ Freedom of the press doesn’t mean freedom to the White House.”
She pointed out that CNN is the network that has the most White House hard passes out of any news outlets across the U.S, saying, “The idea that they aren’t able to get information that they need from the White House is frankly laughable.”
As for the “standard practices” the White House is putting in place, Sanders said on Friday that the White House is developing further “rules and processes to ensure fair and orderly press conferences in the future.” She shared the basic minimum requirement for a reporter attending:
“The very basic minimum is that if certain reporters like Jim Acosta can’t be adults, then CNN needs to send somebody in there who can be.”
President Donald Trump responded on Friday after the judge ordered Acosta’s credentials be returned temporarily by reflecting Sanders’ statement that a specific standard is being put in place and saying, “We have to practice decorum.”
“We want total freedom of the press. It’s more important to me than anybody would believe,” President Trump said in a White House statement. “But you have to act with respect when you’re at the White House, and when I see the way some of my people get treated at news conferences, it’s terrible.”