*Update: CNN has provided TVNewser with the following statement in regard to the back and forth between President Trump and Jim Acosta as seen during today’s press conference:
This President’s ongoing attacks on the press have gone too far. They are not only dangerous, they are disturbingly un-American. While President Trump has made it clear he does not respect a free press, he has a sworn obligation to protect it. A free press is vital to democracy, and we stand behind Jim Acosta and his fellow journalists everywhere.
Chances are you have read this before, but today it happened yet again: CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta and President Trump got into a contentious back-and-forth at a press conference.
Perhaps the most intense to-date.
Trump held a very lengthy presser this afternoon, commenting on the results of last night’s midterm election, during which he praised the Republican victories in the Senate and Governors races, and noting a couple of ways in which he could might be able to work with a newly-elected Democratic House majority, including infrastructure and healthcare.
Trump then decided to take questions from the press for nearly about an hour and a half (after blasting their coverage of the races at the top of his remarks). He called on CNN chief White House correspondent at one point, and needless to say, it got intense.
Acosta: I want to challenge you on one of the statements that you made in the tail end of the campaign in the midterms. —
Trump: Here we go. —
Acosta: That, well, that this caravan was an invasion. —
Trump: I consider it an invasion.
Acosta: Well as you know, Mr. President, the caravan was not an invasion. It is a a group of migrants moving up from Central America towards the border with the U.S.
Trump: Thank you for telling me that. I appreciate it.
Acosta: Why did you characterize it as such and —
Trump: Because I consider it an invasion. You and I have a difference of opinion.
Acosta: But do you think that you demonized immigrants in this elections to try to keep them —
Trump: No, I want them to come into the country but they have to come in legally. They have to come in, Jim, through a process. I want it to be a process, and we need the people. You know why we need the people, don’t you? Because we have hundreds of companies moving in. We need the people.
Acosta: But your campaign ad showing migrants climbing over walls, and so on –
Trump: Well, that’s true. They weren’t actors. do you think they were actors? they weren’t actors. they didn’t come from Hollywood. these were people — this was an actual, you know, it happened a few days ago
Acosta: They’re hundreds of miles away. That’s not an invasion.
Trump: Honestly I think you should let me run the country, you run CNN and if you did it well, your ratings would be much higher.
Acosta: If I may ask one other question?
Trump: That’s enough. That’s enough. Excuse me, that’s enough.
Acosta: I had one other question if I may ask on the Russia investigation. Are you concerned that you may have —
Trump: I’m not concerned about anything with the Russia investigation because it’s a hoax. That’s enough. Put down the mic.
Acosta: Mr. President, are you worried about indictments coming down in this investigation?
Trump: I’ll tell you what, CNN should be ashamed of itself having you working for them. You are a rude, terrible person. You shouldn’t be working for CNN. You’re a very rude person. the way you treat Sarah Huckabee is horrible. You shouldn’t treat people that way.
NBC’s Peter Alexander stood up for Acosta, telling Trump, “I think that’s unfair. I’m Jim’s defense, I’ve traveled with him and he’s a very diligent reporter who busts his butt like the rest of us.
“I think that’s unfair. In @Acosta‘s defense, I’ve traveled with him and watched him, he’s a diligent reporter who busts his butt like the rest of us.”
— @PeterAlexander to President Trump
— NBC News PR (@NBCNewsPR) November 7, 2018
“Well I’m not a big fan of yours either,” an agitated Trump told Alexander.
Acosta again tried to ask a question, and Trump responded: “When you report fake news a lot, you are the enemy of the people.”
Trump also scolded two African American female reporters, telling April Ryan to “sit down,” and accusing PBS’ Yamiche Alcindor of asking a “racist question.”
WATCH: @PBS @NewsHour White House correspondent @Yamiche Alcindor today at a WH news conference asked @realdonaldtrump whether calling himself a nationalist on the campaign trail has been emboldening white nationalists. President Trump replied, “That’s such a racist question.” pic.twitter.com/dzrTG9Yoxn
— PBS NewsHour (@NewsHour) November 7, 2018