White House bans CNN's Kaitlan Collins over 'wrong questions'

Shep Smith responds to White House version of ‘disinvite’ of CNN reporter

White House reporter Kaitlan Collins was snubbed by the White House after she attempted to ask President Donald Trump about his bitter relationship with his former personal attorney Michael Cohen as well as his handling of Russian President Vladimir Putin, which the administration thought was "rude".

Smith used a segment of his show Thursday to denounce not only that retaliation against Collins but the broader assault from the White House against a critical press.

And Fox News President Jay Wallace said, "We stand in strong solidarity with CNN for the right to full access for our journalists as part of a free and unfettered press".

"We strongly condemn the White House's misguided and inappropriate decision today to bar one of our members from an open press event after she asked questions they did not like", wrote WHCA president Olivier Knox.

"First of all, just step back for a second and contemplate the notion that anybody associated with President Trump thinking that a reporter is rude".

Trump's so-called war with the media has taken on many forms, but Wednesday's action against Collins was a serious escalation. Collins was the pool reporter, representing the TV networks during the Oval Office event.

Smith, 54, who said he has worked at Fox for 22 years, noted his colleagues and other journalists "operate in the public interest".

Banning a reporter because you don't like her questions is something dictators do. Shine said to reporters on Thursday, referring to Collins, standing outside the West Wing and addressing reporters standing several feet away.

He also cited comments about the incident from White House counselor Kellyanne ConwayKellyanne Elizabeth ConwayMcCarthy on choosing the next Speaker: "I want it to be me" BBC interviewer to Spicer: "You have corrupted discourse for the entire world" Ivanka Trump's fashion company shutting down MORE, who said members of the news media need to show more respect while covering Trump. Mr. Trump frequently answers reporters' questions even as staffers try to usher them out of the room, creating sometimes-chaotic scenes where low-level press officers shout at reporters as the President tries to speak.

According to Collins, shortly before the Rose Garden event she was summoned to former Fox News executive Bill Shine's office where he and Sarah Sanders told her she was disinvited for asking "inappropriate questions".

CNN, in a statement Wednesday, objected to the White House decision, calling it "retaliatory in nature" and "not indicative of an open and free press".

"Our staff informed her she was not welcome to participate in the next event, but made clear that any other journalist from her network could attend", Huckabee Sanders said in a statement.

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