Sarah Sanders and CNN’s Acosta trade barbs over border visit

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Sarah Huckabee Sanders and CNN correspondent Jim Acosta sparred on social media on Thursday after the White House press secretary thanked Acosta for bolstering the Trump administration’s argument for a border wall.

Acosta posted images from the border near McAllen, Texas, of a steel-slat barrier, chain-link fence and razor-wire, and reported there was “no sign of the national emergency that the president’s been talking about.”

His tweet came as President Trump visited the area to drum up support for his proposed wall along the U.S.-Mexico border amid an ongoing government shutdown.

{mosads}”When I went with President @realDonaldTrump to the border today I never imagined @Acosta would be there doing our job for us and so clearly explaining why WALLS WORK,” Sanders tweeted, citing a tweet in which Acosta described the area near the border as “pretty tranquil.” 

Sanders was one of several conservatives who highlighted Acosta’s tweet to argue that a wall is an effective deterrent to illegal immigration.

Acosta responded a short time later, accusing Sanders of “twisting the truth again.”

“As we have been reporting today there are other sections of the border that don’t have walls or slats,” Acosta tweeted. “Yet, the residents here feel safe.”

Acosta added that he was “glad she didn’t doctor” his video, a swipe at Sanders for sharing altered footage of a November press conference that was used to justify the withdrawal of his press pass.

The president has demanded more than $5 billion in funding for his border wall, arguing the wall is necessary to address what he has called a humanitarian and security crisis.

Democrats have offered money for other border security measures, but have given nothing for the wall. The impasse has been at the heart of a partial shutdown that has dragged on for 20 days.

Trump has pledged to declare a national emergency to construct the wall if no deal is reached.

White House officials have long had an acrimonious relationship with Acosta and CNN as a whole. Sanders and Acosta have regularly clashed during press briefings, and White House counselor Kellyanne Conway on Tuesday called the correspondent a “smartass.”

The White House rescinded Acosta’s credential last November following a heated exchange with the president at a press conference. Sanders accused Acosta of making contact with a White House intern, a charge the reporter and his colleagues refuted.

The matter ended up in court, with a judge ordering the administration to restore Acosta’s press pass.

Tags Donald Trump Kellyanne Conway
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