CNN senior White House correspondent Jim Acosta tweeted a false report that said President Donald Trump did not visit with House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) in the hospital after Wednesday’s shooting, fueling fake news allegations.
After reports confirmed the news that President Trump had visited Scalise at MedStar Washington Hospital Center on Wednesday evening, Acosta tweeted the exact opposite per a White official, “WH official on hospital visit: “President Trump did not meet with Scalise and did not go into the room where Scalise is being treated.”
Acosta quickly deleted his original Tweet but not before it was captured by several Twitter users; many of them accusing the CNN reporter of spreading fake news.
— No One 🇺🇸 (@tweettruth2me) June 15, 2017
Jim Acosta. CNN you people are truely FAKENEWS first you tweet President Trump did not go to see Rep Sclease and then you re make a tweet
— michelle (@mibashful) June 16, 2017
CNN should fire you for reporting fake news. A regular person gets fired if they mess up at the level that you did.
— Ross The Boss (@rossjohansen) June 15, 2017
— James Woods (@RealJamesWoods) June 15, 2017
Acosta tweeted a White House Press Corps email, where he says he based his original tweet on.
Here's a screen grab of the TV pool report that incorrectly stated that POTUS did not see Scalise at the hospital. WH later said POTUS did. pic.twitter.com/VI4ADsepDn
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) June 15, 2017
But social media users were, again, quick to point out that Acosta had originally based his report on word from a White House official and not a TV pool report.
Your original tweet said "WH official".
It didn't reference WH pool.
But once caught out, oh, well, it's the pool's fault. pic.twitter.com/EtXaYzPHVk
— Jeff Dobbs (@jeffdobbs) June 15, 2017
The entire episode dredged up memories of a February exchange between Acosta and Trump that saw the president changing his previous description of CNN from “fake news” to “very fake news.”
“Real news, Mr. President, real news,” Acosta replied.
Indeed, President Trump did visit at his hospital bedside, after he and three others were shot Wednesday morning practice for the annual Congressional Baseball Game. Scalise’s Capitol Hill Police officer detail shot the attacker James T. Hodgkinson, who later died of his injuries.
The congressman, who has undergone three surgeries, remains in critical condition.
Follow Jerome Hudson on Twitter: @JeromeEHudson