Trump Defends Sarah Sanders, Says Acosta's 'Very Unprofessional Man'

Trump Defends Sarah Sanders, Says Acosta's 'Very Unprofessional Man'

"I don't think he's a smart person, but he's got a loud voice", Mr. Trump said of the journalist.

President Donald Trump and Acosta squared off in a heated exchange, and when Trump attempted to move on to the next question, Acosta refused to pass the microphone or sit down.

Earlier in the day Trump called Acosta "a rude, bad person" as he tried to ask the president a question.

"This is a lie", Acosta responded.

Sanders has not confirmed the source of the video she tweeted. Not only is it put into slow motion, there are extra frames added at key points to attempt to make it look like Acosta is making a chopping motion.

But in a statement, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders described Acosta's earlier behaviour during the conference "absolutely unacceptable" and said his White House press pass would be suspended "until further notice".

NBC reporter Peter Alexander rose to ask a question and used the opportunity to defend Acosta.

The White House's treatment of Acosta drew wide rebuke from press freedom and journalism organizations.

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The incident comes amid an atmosphere of heightened hostility toward the media in the U.S. In late October, CNN was targeted with explosive devices sent through the mail. She provided fraudulent accusations and cited an incident that never happened.

Acosta was questioning Trump following the midterm elections, which saw the Democrats seize control of the House of Representatives - making life even more hard for the White House. "You run CNN, and if you did it well, your ratings would be higher", Mr Trump said.

The pair began sparring after Acosta asked Mr Trump about the caravan of migrants heading from Latin America to the southern United States border. "You shouldn't be working for CNN". Trump called the journalist a "rude awful person" and accused his network CNN of reporting "fake news". You are a rude, bad person.

White House staffers decide whether journalists are eligible, though the Secret Service determines whether their applications are approved.

She grabbed the microphone but Acosta wouldn't give it up.

"You talk about somebody that's a loser, she doesn't know what the hell she's doing", Trump said.

I'd say "willingness to mislead" is the functional equivalent of a lie.