UPDATED with Sanders statement, 9:29 AM: The White House press corps and other reporters and media outlets still are digesting Wednesday’s dust-up between CNN’s Jim Acosta and President Donald Trump at an East Room news conference, and now POTUS’ press secretary is catching heat for allegedly sharing a doctored video of the incident on Twitter.
Acosta’s White House access was suspended later Wednesday, with Press Secretary Sarah Sanders saying it was because Acosta “[placed] his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern. This conduct is absolutely unacceptable.” The video she tweeted last night shows the woman trying to take the microphone out of Acosta’s hand and him pushing her arm away.
But here is where this gets interesting.
Several reporters and media analysts today are charging that the video clip she posted was doctored to fit the White House’s version of what happened. (Watch it below.) When the video zooms in to illustrate the moment Acosta’s hand contacted the woman’s arm, it appears to be sped up in an attempt to make it look worse than it was:
What’s more, the clip appears to have originated from InfoWars, the right-wing conspiracy theory site run by Alex Jones. Both Jones and his site were banned permanently from Twitter in September.
Sanders defended her tweet this morning. “The question is: did the reporter make contact or not?” she said, per the White House press pool. “The video is clear, he did. We stand by our statement.”
Here is the video Sanders tweeted, followed by some examples of it being called out on social media, including a comparison to the full-speed video:
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