President Trump insults reporters, claims Jim Acosta video 'wasn't doctored'

President Donald Trump speaks to CNN journalist Jim Acosta during a news conference at the White House on Nov. 7 2018 in Washington

A video distributed by the Trump administration to support its argument for banning CNN reporter Jim Acosta from the White House appears to have been doctored to make Acosta look more aggressive than he was during an exchange with a White House intern, an independent expert said Thursday.

Did the White House share a doctored video of CNN correspondent Jim Acosta's encounter with an intern during a testy exchange with President Trump on Wednesday? "We will, however, never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern", explained White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders via Twitter.

Trump went off on Acosta following a reporter's question about how much longer Acosta would be without a "hard pass" giving him speedy entry to the White House grounds.

The heated exchange began after Acosta clung to the microphone and persisted with questions about the president's repeated and angry denunciation of a caravan of poor Central American migrants making their way through Mexico to the United States border. "CNN should be ashamed of themselves, having you work for them", he said.

Trump's relationship with the journalists who cover the White House fell to a new low on Wednesday after the confrontation with Acosta, who provoked the president by asking him whether he had "demonized" immigrants in the run-up to Tuesday's midterm election. "You have to treat the presidency with respect", he said. Trump repeatedly told Ryan to sit down, adding that the media was hostile. She's very nasty, and she shouldn't be.

US President Donald Trump isn't new to fights with journalists.

The president also warned that "others" could have their press passes revoked as well if they engaged in similar behavior.

Acosta tweeted that Sanders' statement that he put his hands on the aide was "a lie". "When you're in the White House, this is a very sacred place to me", Trump insisted. "You ask a lot of stupid questions", he said, shaking a finger at the journalist, then walking away. Trump followed up Friday, calling Acosta unprofessional and stated that he hadn't decided whether Acosta's suspension would be permanent, but forewarned that "it could be others" who get suspended. "And the way you treat other people is terrible". "Abby Phillip did not ask a "stupid" question today at the White House".

Trump said "that's enough!" and a White House intern tried in vain to take the microphone from the CNN journalist.

Question for @PressSec: Where'd you obtain the distorted @Acosta video you posted? The news outlet was under fire for a series of reports on the alleged Trump-Russia ties.

"The question is: did the reporter make contact or not?"

And CNN has slammed the White House for its actions.

Acosta, meanwhile, is in Paris, where Trump will be landing later on Friday.

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