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Montevideo, May 25th 2019 - 17:22 UTC

Trump's White House will impose “decorum” rules for reporters at press briefings

Saturday, November 17th 2018 - 09:05 UTC
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CNN Acosta's press pass was taken after he clashed with the president during a news conference earlier this month CNN Acosta's press pass was taken after he clashed with the president during a news conference earlier this month
Trump said “people have to behave”, adding his staff were “writing up rules and regulations” for the press to abide by Trump said “people have to behave”, adding his staff were “writing up rules and regulations” for the press to abide by

Donald Trump has threatened to walk out of future press briefings if reporters do not act with “decorum”. The US president was speaking after a Washington DC court ordered the White House to return CNN reporter Jim Acosta's press pass after it was revoked by the US Secret Service.

Mr. Acosta's press pass was taken after he clashed with the president during a news conference earlier this month. Mr. Trump played down the ruling, saying it wasn't “a big deal”.

But, he said, “people have to behave”, adding his staff were “writing up rules and regulations” for the press to abide by, including sticking to the agreed number of questions.

“If they don't listen to the rules and regulations we'll end up back in court and will win,” Mr Trump said. “But more importantly, we'll just leave, and then you won't be very happy.”

“You can't take three questions and four questions and just stand up and not sit down,” he added. “Decorum. You have to practice decorum.”

Speaking outside the court earlier in the day, Mr Acosta praised the decision and told reporters “let's go back to work”.

The judge said the White House decision likely violated the journalist's right to due process and freedom of speech. The ruling forces the White House press office to temporarily return Mr Acosta's “hard pass”, the credential that allows reporters easy access to the White House and other presidential events.

Mr Acosta's lawyer called the ruling “a great day for the first amendment and journalism”.

Mr Acosta was barred from entering the White House a day after he had a heated exchange with President Trump during a news conference on 8 November.

A White House intern tried to take the microphone from Mr Acosta as he attempted to ask the president a follow-up question.

In a statement Mrs. Sanders claimed that he had put “his hands on a young woman” during the exchange, during which Mr Trump called the reporter “a rude, terrible person”.

CNN sued to have Mr Acosta's pass restored, and their lawsuit was joined by other media groups, including conservative-leaning Fox News.

Judge Timothy Kelly, who was appointed to the bench by Mr Trump last year, said Mr Acosta's constitutional rights outweighed the White House's right to have an orderly news conference, the Washington Post reported.

He also criticized the Trump administration's decision, saying that the process was “so shrouded in mystery that the government could not tell me... who made the decision”.

He also called Mrs Sanders' statement claiming that Mr Acosta had inappropriately touched an intern “belated efforts [that] were hardly sufficient to satisfy due process”.

But in court documents, the White House argued that the decision was made in order to preserve White House decorum and it did not claim impropriety towards the intern.

Categories: Politics, United States.

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