Unable to resolve matters behind closed doors, CNN and its chief White House correspondent, Jim Acosta, filed suit in D.C. district court on Tuesday to reinstate Acosta’s permanent credentials to cover the White House.
Acosta and CNN claim that the White House’s revocation of his press credentials after a heated presidential press conference Wednesday violates Acosta’s First Amendment right of freedom of the press and his Fifth Amendment right to due process. The plaintiffs also allege that the Trump administration violated the Administrative Procedure Act by acting “arbitrarily, capriciously, and otherwise not in accordance with law.”
The suit names a myriad of administration officials as defendants in the suit—President Donald Trump, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, Deputy Chief of Staff Bill Shine, Press Secretary Sarah Sanders, the U.S. Secret Service, and Randolph Alles, the director of the Secret Service.
CNN has also requested an immediate restraining order and injunction, which would allow Acosta to get his credentials back without having to wait for the case to be resolved.
“The White House punished Mr. Acosta and CNN for the contents of their reporting,” Theodore J. Boutrous Jr., one of CNN and Acosta’s lawyers, said in a statement. “The law is clear that this violates the First Amendment and Due Process Clause of the Constitution. The arbitrary revocation of Mr. Acosta’s press credentials is causing irreparable injury each and every day because it is stopping him from reporting on news from the White House. That is why we are seeking emergency relief and asking that his credentials be restored immediately.”