On Wednesday, the White House informed CNN reporter Kaitlan Collins that she is banned from attending the upcoming Rose Garden press event. Collins was pulled into a back office by White House officials after she asked tough questions after Trump’s meeting with European Commission President Jean-Claude Junker. Collins questions were about Trump and Cohen’s conversation about hush money, which was captured on audio and recently released to the public.
The White House has since called her questions “inappropriate”.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders issued the following statement following the banning:
“At the conclusion of a press event in the Oval Office, a reporter shouted questions and refused to leave despite repeatedly being asked to do so. Subsequently, our staff informed her she was not welcome to participate in the next event, but made clear that any other journalist from her network could attend. She said it didn’t matter to her because she hadn’t planned to be there anyway. To be clear, we support a free press and ask that everyone be respectful of the presidency and guests at the White House.”
CNN issued the following statement:
“Today, CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins was denied access to cover an open-press event at The White House. After posing questions to President Trump earlier in the day as the network pool reporter, Collins was told by White House deputy chief of staff for communications Bill Shine and press secretary Sarah Sanders that her questions were “inappropriate.” They were not. Just because the White House is uncomfortable with a question regarding the news of day doesn’t mean the question isn’t relevant and shouldn’t be asked. This decision to bar a member of the press is retaliatory in nature and not indicative of an open and free press. We demand better.”
Many TV stations have decided to stand next to their rival, CNN:
“We stand strong in solidarity with CNN for the right to full access for our journalists as part of a free and unfettered press,” says Fox News
“These were questions from the TV pool reporter, which means this is effectively an action taken against all the TV journalists covering the White House,” NBC correspondent Kasie Hunt.
News stations are taking a stand to express their right to write and produce press.
Featured Image via Flickr/Diago Cambiaso