CNN Sues Trump for Suspending White House Reporter

“This is not a step we have taken lightly. But the White House action is unprecedented.”

Al Drago/ZUMA

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

CNN has filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump and several White House aides, claiming that the decision to bar reporter Jim Acosta last week violated the First and Fifth Amendment rights. 

“This is not a step we have taken lightly,” CNN president Jeff Zucker said in a note to staff Tuesday morning. “But the White House action is unprecedented.” In a separate statement, the network said, “If left unchallenged, the actions of the White House would create a dangerous chilling effect for any journalist who covers out elected officials.”

The White House has been accused of using a doctored video to claim that Acosta inappropriately “placed his hands” on a female intern during a tense White House press conference last week in order to justify his suspension. On Sunday, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway challenged those allegations, asserting that the video was “not altered” but instead merely “sped up.”

The lawsuit seeks the immediate return of Acosta’s White House credentials. 


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend