During a press conference on Wednesday morning, his first since July of last year, President-elect Donald Trump attacked and refused to take a question from CNN reporter Jim Acosta.
Trump went after both CNN and BuzzFeed during the conference in response to articles that both organizations published about the damning information Russian intelligence has reportedly been gathering about Trump. BuzzFeed originally published the story, which included several unverified memos. CNN covered the news as well, noting that the information had been passed on to both Trump and President Obama; however, CNN did not include the unverified documents, or details about them, in their report.
After Trump repeatedly denied the validity of the story, calling it “fake news” and decrying the organizations that reported it, Acosta asked the president-elect, “You’re attacking us, can you give us a question?”
Trump stunned both those in attendance and those watching at home when he responded, “Don’t be rude. No, I’m not going to give you a question. You are fake news.”
Trump has received much backlash for his treatment of Acosta, including from Fox News anchor Shepard Smith. At the end of his segment, after reporting on Trump’s response to a question from one of Fox News’s reporters, Smith criticized Trump’s behavior and explained that he and the rest of the Fox News staff believe that CNN’s correspondents “followed journalistic standards.”
Smith’s full statement went as follows:
‘President-elect Trump today told CNN’s Jim Acosta that his organization amounts to fake news. CNN’s exclusive reporting on the Russian matter was separate and distinctly different from the document dump executed by an online news property.
‘Though we at Fox News cannot confirm CNN’s report, it is our observation that its correspondents followed journalistic standards and that neither they nor any other journalists should be subjected to belittling and delegitimizing by the president-elect of the United States.’
Watch Smith’s remarks in the video below:
Fox News' Shephard Smith comes to CNN's defense. pic.twitter.com/yIF9e7CNYX
— Mashable News (@MashableNews) January 11, 2017
CNN also released a response to Trump’s attack shortly after it happened. Their statement, which can be read in full below, makes it clear that they are “fully confident” in their reporting and were careful not to include any information that had not been substantiated.
— CNN (@CNN) January 11, 2017
Featured image is a screenshot from the video.