Next, Acosta attempted to ask another question and refused to yield the microphone, even when his turn was up and a young woman—described by some media outlets as a White House aide or intern—tried to take it back. Acosta rudely rebuffed the poor woman, moving the mic away from her as if they were playing high stakes keep-away. Reporters should challenge the powerful, but the picture of an older male reporter making a younger female staffer uncomfortable wasn’t pretty, especially when Acosta’s only purpose was to showboat for the cameras.
The White House upped the ante significantly. Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders accused Acosta of “placing his hands” on the intern. You can watch the video for yourself: It’s clear that nothing of the sort happened. Acosta might have embarrassed the poor woman, but he didn’t assault her.
The end result: The White House decided to revoke Acosta’s press clearance. CNN is standing by its reporter, and accused Sanders of making “fraudulent accusations.”