While White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders’ straight-faced demeanor while speaking during press briefings is nothing new, she had an extra sense of chipiness during her Monday briefing. Sanders said she would only take one question per reporter, and stood by that throughout. About halfway through, though, Sanders appeared to lose her temper in a follow-up question asked by CNN’s Jim Acosta.
Watch the video of the press briefing at the top of the page.
Sanders was asked about a tweet The Washington Post‘s Dave Weigel sent during President Donald Trump‘s rally Friday in Pensacola, Florida. Weigel mistakenly tweeted out an inaccurate photo of the crowd, accusing Trump of being incorrect when he said the arena was “filled to the rafters.” Trump called out Weigel, who deleted the tweet and issued an apology, on Twitter for being “fake news.”
In her response to a question regarding the topic during the press briefing, Sanders accused Weigel of putting bias in his reporting by sending the tweet, adding that it’s “something that’s gotten a little bit out of control.”
“A number of outlets have had to retract and change and rewrite and make editor’s notes to stories, some of them with major impacts, including moving markets,” Sanders said. “This is a big problem and we think it’s something that should be taken seriously.”
Acosta followed up the question about Weigel’s tweet, telling Sanders that “journalists make honest mistakes, and that doesn’t make them fake news.”
That’s when an argument between the two started.
Sanders cut off Acosta, saying: “But when journalists make honest mistakes, they should own up to them”
Acosta tried to speak over Sanders, saying Wiegel did indeed own up to his mistake, but she abruptly said that she “wasn’t finished.”
“There’s a very big difference between making honest mistakes and purposefully misleading the American people,” Sanders said. “It’s something that happens regularly…I’m not done. You cannot say that it’s an honest mistake when you’re purposely putting out information that you know to be false.”
The confrontation between the two didn’t end there, as Acosta tried to asked Sanders to cite a “fake news” story. Sanders cited ABC News’ Brian Ross’ inaccurate report regarding Michael Flynn flipping on Trump in the Russia probe.
Acosta tried to ask another question about sexual misconduct allegations against Trump, but she largely ignored him, passing over his question and telling him she was moving on.
“I’m not taking another question from you at this point,” she said as Acosta continued asking his question. “I’m not going to respond to that question.”