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Mark Levin: ‘CNN and Jim Acosta Are Not Protecting Freedom of the Press; They’re Protecting Themselves’

Emily Ward
By Emily Ward | November 15, 2018 | 12:04 PM EST

Nationally syndicated radio talk show host, TV host, author and American lawyer Mark Levin (Screenshot)

On his nationally syndicated radio talk show, “The Mark Levin Show,” on Wednesday night, host and American lawyer Mark Levin said, “CNN and Jim Acosta are not protecting freedom of the press; they’re protecting themselves.”

“CNN and Jim Acosta are not protecting freedom of the press; they’re protecting themselves,” stated Mark Levin. “This is not some great First Amendment case. If you read the Theodore Boutrous/Theodore Olson brief, it’s almost reads like a first-year law student wrote it with a bunch of Crayola crayons, in my view. It’s boilerplate.”

Levin’s comments came after several news outlets filed amicus briefs, or “friend of the court” briefs, signaling their support of CNN’s lawsuit against the White House for its decision to suspend CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta’s press pass last week.

Below is a transcript of Levin’s remarks from his show on Wednesday:

“CNN and Jim Acosta are not protecting freedom of the press; they’re protecting themselves. This is not some great First Amendment case. If you read the Theodore Boutrous/Theodore Olson brief, it almost reads like a first-year law student wrote it with a bunch of Crayola crayons, in my view. It’s boilerplate.

“At no point do any of these news organizations – any of them, any of them – insist on any level of professionalism from any of their reporters in those presidential press conferences. I don’t mean roll over and play dead. I don’t mean be lapdogs like we saw the media during the Obama administration. You can be tough. You can ask aggressive questions, but you can’t throw a tantrum. You can’t take over the press conference.

“And the president, not some d--- judge or group of judges, gets to decide. A president gets to decide, and if the president had thrown Acosta out of the White House – and you know what? He never did. He took his hard pass away, so he can seek a daily press pass on a daily basis. But if the president had removed people in that room who opposed him, he would have removed every reporter in that room, virtually. But he didn’t. He didn’t remove the NBC reporter. He didn’t remove the PBS reporter. He didn’t remove the – I don’t even know where she’s from – April Ryan reporter. He didn’t remove the other CNN reporters. So if this is content-based, they have a hell of a tough time proving it.

“We the American people saw what’s going on. We have a very, very low opinion of the news media. And we also have a very low opinion of the judiciary. Now, will they combine once again to uproot the Constitution, to do damage to the First Amendment and freedom of the press? It is Mr. Acosta and his emotional tantrums in the press conferences who denies the press and denies the president and his surrogate, the press secretary, the ability to communicate with the American people.

“I want CNN to know, I want the lawyers for Fox to know and USA Today and the AP to know – you’re not there for yourselves. You’re there for us. And if you’re going to defend Jim Acosta, that’s a problem, a big problem, because we can’t get the news. We can’t hear what the president has to say. And there’s a lot of reporters that may have good questions.

“The media, in this case, they’re circling the wagons around individual personalities while clothing themselves in the First Amendment, because so much of the media today – the news media on the cable channels and the network channels and so forth – has become a matter of personalities going Hollywood. But that’s not what the news is supposed to be. I don’t care who the hell files a, an amicus brief supporting CNN and Jim Acosta.

“And the media reporting on itself, pseudo-event, created by Acosta, pseudo-event, created by the lawsuit, pseudo-event, created by these other news organizations filing their amicus briefs – and we’re supposed to be impressed. Impressed with what? I’m not impressed in the least. It’s a disgrace.”


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