CNN sued the Trump administration on behalf of reporter Jim Acosta on Tuesday, asking a court to restore Acosta’s White House press pass after President Trump suspended it last week.
The administration revoked them last week following President Trump’s contentious news conference, where Acosta refused to give up a microphone when the president said he didn’t want to hear anything more from him.
The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Washington, D.C., District Court. CNN claims the revocation of Acosta’s press pass violates the constitutional rights to freedom on the press and due process. CNN is asking for an immediate restraining order to return Acosta to the White House.
This morning, CNN filed a lawsuit against @realDonaldTrump and top aides. The White House has violated CNN and @Acosta's First Amendment rights of freedom of the press and Fifth Amendment rights to due process. Complaint: https://t.co/43oX6L8xA7 pic.twitter.com/RvJ0Cgh6oi
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) November 13, 2018
“CNN filed a lawsuit against the Trump Administration this morning in DC District Court,” the statement read. “It demands the return of the White House credentials of CNN’s Chief White House correspondent, Jim Acosta. The wrongful revocation of these credentials violates CNN and Acosta’s First Amendment rights of freedom of the press, and their Fifth Amendment rights to due process. We have asked this court for an immediate restraining order requiring the pass be returned to Jim, and will seek permanent relief as part of this process.”
The White House Correspondents’ Association said it “strongly supports CNN’s goal of seeing their correspondent regain a US Secret Service security credential that the White House should not have taken away in the first place.”
CNN also asserted that other news organizations could have been targeted by the Trump administration this way, and could be in the future.
“While the suit is specific to CNN and Acosta, this could have happened to anyone,” the network said. “If left unchallenged, the actions of the White House would create a dangerous chilling effect for any journalist who covers our elected officials.”
CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker reiterated that in an internal memo to staff. “This is not a step we have taken lightly. But the White House action is unprecedented,” Zucker said.