The White House could revoke more media passes, President Donald Trump suggested Friday during a news conference.
During a morning media availability, a reporter asked Trump how long he was going to leave CNN reporter Jim Acosta in the “penalty box.” The White House on Wednesday suspended the media pass for Acosta, CNN’s chief White House correspondent.
“I haven't made that decision, but it could be others also,” the president responded.
Trump also called out April Ryan, a White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks and a CNN analyst.
"You talk about somebody that's a loser, she doesn't know what the hell she's doing," Trump said.
The president on Friday also called Acosta unprofessional and unintelligent. Other mainstream outlets have defended Acosta.
The president also ridiculed CNN White House correspondent Abby Phillip who asked Trump if he wants acting attorney general Matt Whitaker to “rein in” special counsel Robert Mueller.
Trump responded: "What a stupid question that is. What a stupid question, but I watch you a lot; you ask a lot of stupid questions.”
Elisabeth Bumiller, the Washington bureau chief for the New York Times, said, “The president should not pick and choose who covers him, and he should certainly not force out a representative of one of the country's leading news organizations, one that tens of millions of Americans depend on for their news."
On Friday, CNN called Trump's statement an "unprecedented threat" that "poses a serious challenge to the White House press corps and the association that represents them.”
Initially, the White House said Acosta placed his hands on an intern who attempted to take a microphone away from him. Trump said of the incident Friday that Acosta “was not nice to that young woman. I don't hold him for that because it wasn't overly, you know, horrible."
He also refuted claims that the White House video was doctored.
"Give me a break," Trump said, adding that the clip only showed a close-up of the intern grabbing the microphone.
On another matter, the president called Acosta’s exchanges with press secretary Sarah Sanders disgraceful. Reporters must treat the White House and the presidency with respect, according to Trump.
CNN has faced many accusations of peddling “fake news.” The news outlet was under fire for a series of reports on the alleged Trump-Russia ties. One erroneous story was retracted and led to the resignation of three staffers at CNN.