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Judge orders White House to return CNN reporter press pass

16 Nov 2018, 19:33 ( 6 Months ago)

DF-Xinhua Report
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters at the White House. File Photo Xinhua.

Federal judge Timothy Kelly on Friday ordered the White House to return CNN reporter Jim Acosta's press pass after CNN filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump and several top White House aides over the dispute.

   CNN on Tuesday sued the Trump administration over the suspension of Acosta's press pass to the White House following his heated exchange with the president last week, claiming the decision violated the reporter's First and Fifth Amendment rights to free speech and due process.

   The judge did not rule on the underlying case on Friday, but granted CNN's request for a temporary restraining order which will allow Acosta to get access to the White House again for at least a short period of time, according to a CNN report.

   The judge said the White House did not provide Acosta with the due process required to legally revoke his press pass, adding that he believes CNN and Acosta are likely to prevail in the case overall, said the report.

   It is thought that based on the judge's explanation, the White House could seek to revoke Acosta's press pass again if it provided that due process.

   The Justice Department on Wednesday argued in a legal filing that the president and White House possess "broad discretion to regulate access to the White House for journalists."

   "No journalist has a First Amendment right to enter the White House," three Justice Department lawyers wrote in the filing.

   "The president and White House possess the same broad discretion to regulate access to the White House for journalists (and other members of the public) that they possess to select which journalists receive interviews, or which journalists they acknowledge at press conferences," the lawyers said.

   Kelly was appointed to the bench by Trump last year, and confirmed with bipartisan support in the Senate.