White House stands by Acosta accusation

White House stands by Acosta accusation

Jim Acosta, CNN's chief White House correspondent, questions President Donald Trump at a news conference on Nov. 7 at the White House. After the two got into a tiff, the White House revoked Acosta's press credentials for the White House, prompting the network to file a lawsuit. Acosta's credentials were restored a few days later. (WhiteHouse.gov)

WASHINGTON—White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders is continuing to insist that CNN correspondent Jim Acosta placed his hands on a White House intern during a heated moment in Wednesday’s press conference, hours after she shared what appears to be an altered video of the incident online.

“The question is: did the reporter make contact or not? The video is clear, he did. We stand by our statement,” Sanders said in a statement Thursday.

During Wednesday’s press conference in the White House East Room, Acosta and Trump entered a tense back-and-forth that culminated in a White House intern attempting to take the microphone away from Acosta.

In an initial statement announcing their decision to temporarily suspend Acosta’s press credential, Sanders zeroed in on the tussle over the mic.

“We will … never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern,” Sanders said. “This conduct is absolutely unacceptable.”

The next day she tweeted a video of the incident that appears to have been selectively sped up.

The White House’s decision on Acosta has been met with outcry from across the media landscape.

CNN voiced “full support” for Acosta and accused Sanders of relying on “fraudulent accusations.”

Olivier Knox, chair of the White House Correspondents Association, said in a statement that the decision was “out of line to the purported offense” and urged those who thought otherwise to watch the original video.

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