CNN's Acosta responds to clash with Trump: 'When they go low we keep doing our jobs'

CNN White House reporter Jim Acosta on Wednesday responded to President TrumpDonald John TrumpMia Love pulls ahead in Utah race as judge dismisses her lawsuit Trump administration denies exploring extradition of Erdoğan foe for Turkey Trump congratulates Kemp, says Abrams will have 'terrific political future' MORE calling him a "rude, terrible person" at a news conference, saying "when they go low, we keep doing our jobs."

“That’s the way I look at it. I had a question to ask," Acosta told CNN's Jake Tapper. "He just didn’t like hearing that question. He didn’t like being challenged on that point. And he certainly doesn’t like being called out for his falsehoods. But of course Jake, as you were just mentioning, that’s our job. That’s what we do over here.”

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Trump said during the news conference earlier Wednesday that CNN should be "ashamed" of employing Acosta after the White House correspondent questioned the president over his rhetoric regarding the migrants fleeing violence in Central America and moving toward the U.S. border.

Acosta pressed Trump over description of the migrants as an "invasion," despite the fact that they are hundreds of miles from the border.

"CNN should be ashamed of themselves, having you working for them," Trump said in response. "You are a rude, terrible person."

Acosta also said later while appearing on CNN that Trump's news conference sounded like "a pity party," noting that Trump took time to single out incumbent Republican House candidates who didn't "embrace" the president and lost their races.

“I was struck by the fact that the president we thought was going to come in there and do this victory lap, it sounded very much like a pity party, the way he was talking about lawmakers that wouldn’t stand by him on the GOP side in various House races," Acosta said. 

"He seems to be unaware of the fact that his immigration rhetoric and his rhetoric on many levels was just turning off a lot of those suburban swing district voters," Acosta added.

“This President’s ongoing attacks on the press have gone too far,” a CNN spokesperson said in a statement provided to The Hill. 

“They are not only dangerous, they are disturbingly un-American. While President Trump has made it clear he does not respect a free press, he has a sworn obligation to protect it. A free press is vital to democracy, and we stand behind Jim Acosta and his fellow journalists everywhere,” they added. 

Trump told reporters that Republicans stopped a so-called blue wave in the midterm elections. While Democrats won control of the House, the GOP held its majority in the Senate and may increase its number of seats in the upper chamber.

—Updated at 4:06 p.m.