Thursday on CNN’s “Newsroom,” network chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta discussed his unsuccessful attempts to get White House press secretary Sarah Sanders to say the press was not the “enemy of the people” at today’s briefing.
I walked out of the end of that briefing because I am totally saddened by what just happened. Sarah Sanders was repeatedly given a chance to say the press is not the enemy and she wouldn't do it. Shameful.
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) August 2, 2018
Acosta said, “I think what you saw happen here at the end of that briefing was the true feelings of the president, the true feelings of many of the people that work in this administration laid bare. They believe in their heart of hearts that the journalists who cover this White House, the journalists who work in this city, who were just trying a few moments ago to hold some of these officials accountable about attacks on our democracy, that the people here who work at this White House, all the way up to the president, evidently believe that journalists are the enemy of the people. Literally, the enemy of the people.”
He continued, “I was giving Sarah several opportunities to set the record straight, and she flat refused. What you can obviously see—she’s taken a lot of what she’s experienced very personally. I don’t blame her for that. My goodness, she has taken on a lot. But at the same time, she also has come up here to this podium on a regular basis and continued to tell the American people, you know, provable falsehoods, lies, and so on. And unfortunately, our job as journalists, as you know, we have to call that stuff out. We have to fact check them. We’re fact checkers in real-time with this president because he tells falsehoods and lies so much. It’s unfortunate the position that we’re all in right now. And I’m standing in this briefing room right now, there’s no government official here, but I’ll say that the press is not the enemy of the people.”
He added, “I think maybe we should make some bumper stickers, make some buttons, you know, maybe we should go out on Pennsylvania Avenue like these folks who chant ‘CNN sucks’ and ‘fake news,’ maybe we should go out, all journalists should go out on Pennsylvania Avenue and chant, ‘we’re not the enemy of the people,’ because I’m tired of this. Honestly, I’m tired of this. It is not right. It is not fair. It is not just. It is un-American to come out here and call the press the enemy of the people. Ivanka Trump knows that. I don’t know why her father doesn’t. And I don’t know why this press secretary doesn’t.”
Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN