Acosta, McEnany spar over Trump’s manipulated CNN tweet

CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jim AcostaJames (Jim) AcostaAppeals court blocks White House from suspending reporter Flash bangs amid protests near White House heard in background of Trump address In the age of Trump, media bias comes into the spotlight MORE sparred with White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Friday over a recent tweet by President TrumpDonald John TrumpOklahoma venue management asks Trump campaign for health plan ahead of rally Pompeo slams Bolton account as spreading ‘lies,’ ‘fully-spun half-truths’ and ‘falsehoods’ Twitter flags Trump tweet featuring fake CNN chyron as ‘manipulated media’ MORE that Twitter flagged as “manipulated media.”

The contentious back-and-forth began when Acosta asked about the president sharing a fake video Thursday that included an edited CNN chyron.

“Last night, the president tweeted out some fake videos, one of which was labeled ‘manipulated media’ by Twitter,” Acosta said. “Why is the president sharing fake videos on Twitter about two toddlers who are obviously showing a lot of love for one another? It seems as though he is exploiting children to make some sort of point.”

“He was making a point about CNN specifically,” McEnany replied. “A point that CNN has regularly taken him out of context.”

She then referred to a lawsuit CNN eventually settled with Nicholas Sandmann, the Covington Catholic High School student whose interaction early last year with Omaha Tribe elder Nathan Phillips at the Lincoln Memorial went viral.

Sandmann, who was wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat during the incident, sued the network for $275 million in May 2019 over the network’s reporting that included allegations CNN was “vilifying and bullying him” and twisting the story to fit an anti-Trump agenda.

The amount of the settlement has not been disclosed.

Acosta pressed McEnany, a former CNN contributor, again about Trump’s Thursday tweet, a video of a black toddler and a white toddler edited to include a CNN chyron reading “terrified todler[sic] runs from racist baby.”

“So you’re saying it is OK to exploit to toddler hugging one another on to make some sort of political point?” Acosta asked. “As you know, the president has described members of the press as fake news during the course of this administration. When you share a vague video like that, doesn’t that make you fake news?”

“I think the president was making satirical point that was quite funny if you go and actually watch the video,” McEnany responded. “The point was it was a play on CNN reportedly taking the repeatedly taking him out of context.”

Trump’s tweet had been viewed more than 20 million times as of Friday afternoon.


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