CNN’s Acosta to Trump: ‘What Is It With Your Coziness’ With Dictators and Autocrats?


CNN’s Jim Acosta pressed President Donald Trump during his Japan press conference earlier Saturday. Trump lightheartedly told Vladimir Putin not to interfere in the election.

“You did seem to be joking there with the Russian president. Are we taking that to be wrong?” Acosta asked. “And what is it with your coziness with some of these dictators and autocrats at these summits? With Mohammad bin Salman, the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, when you were asked about the case of Jamal Khashoggi, you did not respond to that question––were you afraid of offending him on that subject?”

“No, not at all. I don’t really care about offending people,” Trump said. “I sort of thought you’d know that.”

“You passed up an opportunity…” Acosta started.

“And, by the way, congratulations. I understand you have a book. Is it doing well?” Trump said.

After the brief exchange about Jim Acosta’s book, Trump said, “I get along with everybody, except you people, actually. I get along with a lot of people.”

He said, in particular, he gets along with MBS and Putin.

At one point, Acosta brought up the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi, saying, “When you were given the opportunity to call Mohammed bin Salman out on that, you did not do it. Did you do it privately, and do you agree that it is despicable for a government to kill a journalist?”

“Yes, I do. I think it’s horrible or anybody else, by the way. But I think it’s horrible,” Trump said.

He continued:

“Nobody so far has pointed directly a finger at the future king of Saudi Arabia. I will say I spoke to his father… They’ve been a terrific ally. They’re creating millions of Jobs in this country. They’re ordering not only military equipment but $400 billion worth and actually even more than that over a period of time worth of different things. And with that being said I’m extremely angry and unhappy about a thing like that taking place. But as of this moment, more than 13 people are being prosecuted, and I hear the number is going to be going up. But it’s a good question.”

You can watch above, via CNN.

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Josh Feldman is a Senior Editor at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter: @feldmaniac