Acosta and Trump

The New Statesman America team chew it over.

Hi everyone, and welcome to the NS Debate: an occasional series in which we discuss something that’s animating the public conversation. Today our New Statesman America team discusses Trump’s withdrawal of the credentials of CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta after a bitter exchange at a press conference on Wednesday. Following the heated discussion, the White House press secretary released a doctored video and falsely accused Acosta of “placing his hands on” a White House intern who tried to take his microphone from him.

And the question is: how significant is all this, and what should the White House press corps do?

The divide is:

1) The White House banning Acosta – especially in light of the fact that they doctored the footage in a video they released in order to make the scuffle for the microphone look violent – is an extreme abrogation of all Americans’ First Amendment rights and demands an immediate and vigorous response from the press.


2) The White House press briefing room is a pointless charade designed mainly for TV broadcasters to showboat, it plays right into Trump’s hands and sending journalists there is a waste of time in the first place

Obviously all sides condemn Trump’s vilification of the press – this happened just two weeks after a pipe-bomb was mailed to CNN’s office – and especially the dishonest way the White House went about withdrawing Acosta’s credentials, but how big a deal is this exactly and what should happen next?

Nicky Woolf (New Statesman America editor): So this is more directed at TV news than print reporting, but there was something Trump said in that totally bananas press conference yesterday where he had that confrontation with Acosta that I thought was particularly revealing. He said something like “it’s …read more

Source:: New Statesman


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