First Amendment Lawyer Floyd Abrams Says CNN Would Have ‘Strong Lawsuit’ Against White House Over Acosta Ban


Brian Stelter led a discussion about whether or not CNN may have grounds to sue the Donald Trump administration over revoking Jim Acosta‘s press pass on Reliable Sources Sunday.

“I think it’s a really strong lawsuit,” said constitutional attorney Floyd Abrams after Stelter asked if CNN had grounds to sue. He cited several requirements, set by precedent, that the White House should have to meet to revoke a pass, none of which were met.

Stelter then asked if they should sue, and Abrams said yes. They both agreed that this will happen again, now that the White House is setting the position.

Former CNN Washington Bureau Chief Frank Sesno said that the president is in an “untenable” position, but is focusing on the Acosta/CNN battle anyway.

Stelter turned to veteran journalist Sam Donaldson and asked about that, whether they have to be careful about distraction. Donaldson took his response in a different direction first, though.

“I hope I’m not mistaken, but it’s my understanding that CNN and Acosta have sued, that there will be a court hearing on Tuesday on this very matter we’ve been discussing,” he said.

“Not that I know of. Not that I know of. You may be ahead of me,” Stelter replied.

“I’ve been told that because I’ve been asked to give an affidavit, which I’ve prepared, to be submitted to the court,” said Donaldson.

Stelter blinked quietly.

UPDATE: Donaldson jumped the gun in his remarks to Stelter, who tweeted a CNN statement later which said the network has not yet decided to file a lawsuit. “No decisions have been made,” they said. This post has been updated to reflect that.

Well they have a panel full of free legal advice, now, discussing on-air whether or not it’s a good idea.

Watch the clip above, courtesy of CNN.

[Featured image via screengrab]

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