A group of 13 American news organisations including Fox News and Associated Press Wednesday, came out in support of CNN in its legal battle against US President Donald Trump’s administration in the case that involves revoking the White House access of CNN reporter Jim Acosta.
Fox News, which has often earned praises from President Trump asserted that the press credentials “should never be weaponized” and underlined that the act of revoking the CNN reporter’s press pass raises concerns over press freedom.
“Fox News supports CNN in its legal effort to regain its White House reporter’s press credential,” the news channel’s president Jay Wallace was quoted as saying in a statement. “We intend to file an amicus brief with the US District Court. Secret Service passes for working White House journalists should never be weaponized. While we don’t condone the growing antagonistic tone by both the president and the press at recent media avails, we do support a free press, access and open exchanges for the American people,” the statement added.
“Whether the news of the day concerns national security, the economy, or the environment, reporters covering the White House must remain free to ask questions. It is imperative that independent journalists have access to the President and his activities, and that journalists are not barred for arbitrary reasons,” the law firm Ballard Spahr said in a statement on behalf of the news organizations.
Fox News President Jay Wallace said that Secret Service passes for working White House journalists “should never be weaponized.” Fox News was one of the organizations part of the filing.
Wallace said while Fox News doesn’t condone the “growing antagonistic tone by both the president and the press at recent media avails,” it supports “access and open exchanges for the American people.”
The announcement comes a day after CNN announced that it was filing a lawsuit to restore the press pass of journalist Acosta, who was restricted from covering the White House after a heated exchange with Trump during a press conference.
Initially, the officials were quoted as saying that the CNN chief White House reporter’s press access was revoked because Acosta touched a White House female intern ‘inappropriately’ as he struggled to hold the microphone during his heated exchange of words with Trump.
After the incident, Trump later stated that journalists might be barred if they were not “respectful.” The White House dismissed CNN’s complaint as “grandstanding” and declared to “vigorously defend” against the lawsuit.
(With Inputs from AP)