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Who Is Jim Acosta? Everything You Need To Know About CNN’s Headline-Making Correspondent

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As chief White House correspondent, CNN’s Jim Acosta is no stranger to news stories but instead of breaking today’s update, he’s the key figure at the centre of it. 

In extraordinary scenes that unfolded at a press conference yesterday, Donald Trump berated the reporter and called him “a rude, terrible person” in an exchange that soon became headline news. 

Hours later, it was revealed that Acosta’s White house credentials had been revoked, with a spokesperson for the administration claiming the reporter assaulted an intern who had tried to take his microphone during the heated exchange. 

If the press conference itself didn’t put Acosta on your radar then that update probably did – but just who is the headline-making reporter? 


ASSOCIATED PRESS

Jim Acosta 

Here’s everything you need to know about CNN’s political expert…

His Career Began In The 1990s

Acosta’s journalism career began in the 1990s, when he worked for a Washington DC radio station, before landing a series of television jobs.

It at was at CBS News that he began covering bigger stories, following Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry on the campaign trail and travelling to Baghdad to cover the Iraq war.

In 2007, he left to join CNN and covered both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton’s campaigns, then the former’s time in the Oval Office

During this time, Acosta climbed the ranks within the network, winning increasingly important roles and landing his current one in January.

He Gave Obama A Hard Time Too

At a televised news conference in November 2015, Acosta got straight to the point with a question about ISIS, asking the then-president: “Why can’t we just take these bastards out?”

In March 2016, he took a similarly tough stance during Obama’s historic trip to Cuba, using the news conference there to question Raúl Castro on his country’s human rights record.

So What’s The Deal With Him And Trump?

As you might be able to guess from the latest developments, it’s fair to say the two have never been on each other’s Christmas card lists.

Yesterday’s exchange – which was their most-heated yet – is just the latest in a long line of disputes between the president and Acosta, all of which have played out in press conferences.

In May 2016, the then-candidate sarcastically called Acosta “a real beauty” and in January 2017 he blanked him entirely and refused to take a question on Russia.  

As Politico pointed out earlier this year, repeatedly being ignored during the call for questions is kind of a big deal when you’re “a TV reporter whose success depends on his visibility”.

Acosta has clashed with other key players in the Trump administration, confronting White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and riling up senior policy adviser Stephen Miller.

And Obviously, Trump Is Not A Fan Of CNN Either 

When the President says the words “fake news”, you can pretty much guarantee he’ll namecheck CNN shortly after. 

As the broadcaster’s key representative in the White House, Acosta is often the one who has to answer to these “fake news” jibes – as was the case yesterday.

This has made the reporter a key figure in the fight to retain press freedom in the US, and his pinned tweet is currently a reference to the fact Trump once called the media “the enemy of the people” while his bio says “I believe in real news”. 

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