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333,000+ to the WHCA: Stand in Solidarity Against Trump’s Blacklist of CNN’s Jim Acosta

WASHINGTON - More than 333,000 people have signed onto a petition from Media Matters for America, a nonprofit media watchdog organization, urging the White House Correspondents’ Association to stand in solidarity against President Trump’s blacklist of CNN’s Jim Acosta and refuse to participate in White House press events until the ban is lifted.

The petition is seeing renewed interest after a press conference yesterday, where Donald Trump berated CNN reporter Jim Acosta for asking questions that he didn’t want to answer. Later in the evening, the Trump administration revoked Acosta’s press credentials and barred him from entering the White House grounds.
 

“The White House Press Correspondents Association exists to advance the interests of and protective the White House Press Corps and right now, they freedom of the press is in jeopardy. They need to act,” explained Angelo Carusone, president of Media Matters for America, and author of the petition. “Reporters need to make it a matter of policy that if one of their members if blacklisted, that the rest of the White House Press Corps will line up in solidarity -- and either refuse to participate in White House press events or only ask questions on behalf of the banned reporter/outlet until the ban is lifted.”

According to Media Matters for America, Trump has a history of doing just this thing. During the 2016 campaign, he has literally banned the Des Moines Register from covering his events. He banned Univision from attending his events. He revoked the Washington Post’s credentials for a period in retaliation for a headline that he didn’t like. He revoked Politico’s credentials for a while to punish them for an article he didn’t like. BuzzFeed--which Trump called "a pathetic pile of garbage" during a press conference--was on a blacklist starting in June 2015 and extending well into early 2017. The Daily Beast had been blacklisted as well and was frequently denied credentials as a result.

“Despite this long record and Trump’s increasingly brazen attacks against the news media, journalists covering Trump still haven’t learned. Time and time again, as one outlet after another is frozen out, reporters continue to go about their interactions with Trump and his people as if nothing is wrong,” added Carusone. “Enough is enough. Some principles are more important than competition among news outlets. If a free press has any hope of surviving Trump’s sustained attacks, we need the journalists covering Trump to step up and send a clear message: If Trump blackballs one of you, the rest of you need to stand in solidarity.”
 
Media Watchdog Urges White House Correspondents’ Association to Refuse to Engage with Trump Until CNN Jim Acosta’s Press Credentials Are Restored
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