Acosta: ‘We Weren’t In America Anymore’ With Trump Supporters

During an obnoxious appearance on the Wednesday edition of HLN’s S.E. Cupp Unfiltered, CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta opened up and showcased his true disdain for Trump supporters after they booed and heckled him at a rally the night before.

According to Acosta, when he was surrounded by those Trump supporters in Tampa Bay, Florida, “Honestly, it felt like we weren't in America anymore. I don't know how to put it any more plainly than that.

Americans should not be treating their fellow Americans in this way. But unfortunately what we've seen and this has been building for some time since the campaign,” he whined. The hypocrisy was breathtaking for two main reasons. First, there had been many a CNN employee that had condemned Trump supporters as racist rubes. Don Lemon is one name who fits that title.

Second, Acosta followed up by seeming to insinuate that those Trump supporters were ready to attack him like animals. “[Trump] is whipping these crowds up into a frenzy to the point where they really want to come after us,” he proclaimed. “We have these bike rack-like barriers around the press cage, as we call it, to protect us essentially from people who might take things too far. It's unfortunate.”

As someone who used to work on large stage productions in college, those barriers are primarily put up to protect the equipment.

Of course, Acosta asserted that the reason those Trump supporters hated CNN was that they were essentially brainwashed by Fox News and other conservative media outlets:

 

 

My scene of it, S.E., is that these opinions that these folks have at these rallies, they're shaped by what they see in the primetime hours of Fox News and what they hear from some conservative news outlets that, sort of, give them this daily diet of what they consider to be terrible things we do over here at CNN. It's very unfortunate. But it's a pitting of American against American and honestly, it needs to stop.

After being teed up by host S.E. Cupp, Acosta worried that one day, one of those Trump supporters would snap and try to hurt a journalist, or worse. “I think it's been dangerous for some time. I was worried during the campaign that a journalist was going to get hurt and it has been building,” he opined. “But when you refer to members of the press as the enemy of the people, you're essentially putting targets on our backs.”

The smears against those hard-working Trump supporters weren’t just coming from Acosta. Cupp decried the pro-Trump “mob” and how a mother at the rally put an anti-CNN button on her baby. “And not even children are safe with parents using their babies as props in Trump’s war against the media,” she spat. “The fever pitch of Trump’s rhetoric and the mob-like dispositions of his supporters at these rallies has become downright scary.

Following a clip of former Fox News commentator Lt. Col. Ralph Peters ludicrously comparing Trump’s rhetoric to Soviet purges, Cupp suggested it “might not be quite that bad, yet.

It’s generally understood that the elitists at CNN and their affiliates look down their noses at Trump supporters in the heartland, but this level of open discontent is not too uncommon. And yet they're still struggling to rack their brains with why people dislike them.

The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:

 

 

HLN's S.E. Cupp Unfiltered
August 1, 2018
5:03 p.m. Eastern

S.E. CUPP: Now it's bad enough that the President of the United States fosters this kind of hate of the media. What's worse is he actually celebrates it. Late last night, the President retweeted that video approvingly to 53 million followers. And not even children are safe with parents using their babies as props in Trump’s war against the media. The fever pitch of Trump’s rhetoric and the mob-like dispositions of his supporters at these rallies has become downright scary.

Director of the UVA Center for Politics, Larry Sabato tweeted that the rally was “disgusting, disgraceful and unworthy of anyone who respects the First Amendment, not to mention basic manners. POTUS and his crew refuse to put a stop to this. Future generations will wonder why we the people let this happen and there's no good answer. Mob rules pure and simple.”

(…)

LT. COL. RALPH PETERS: Under Stalin, during the purges, if you were called an enemy of the people, it was a death sentence.

CUPP: Might not be quite that bad, yet. But this is not the first time the media has been under siege by the country's commander and chief.

(…)

CUPP: Okay, here's the deal. This isn't just about a president that wants to punish the press, though that's bad enough. It's about a public that wants to punish the press and in terrifying ways. IF you’re a journalist today, you’ve likely gotten hate mail and maybe even death threats for doing your job. This president doesn't seem bothered by that. In fact, he celebrates the seething animosity.

(…)

5:12:55 PM Eastern

CUPP: We're back. I want to talk to someone who was at the rally in Tampa last night. He’s covered countless of these and has become one of the President’s human punching bags, CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta. Jim, we’ve seen your videos and I've been to these events too. I’ve met with countless Trump supporters. Even I was shocked at the level of vitriol that was aimed your way last night. Give us an idea of what it felt like to be in the middle of it.

JIM ACOSTA: Well, S.E. I mean. Honestly, it felt like we weren't in America anymore. I don't know how to put it any more plainly than that. Americans should not be treating their fellow Americans in this way. But unfortunately what we've seen and this has been building for some time since the campaign.

I've been talking about this as an issue since the campaign. When the President, during the campaign, referred to us as dishonest media, the disgusting media, liars, scum, thieves and so on and then he rolled that right into the Oval Office and started calling us fake news and the enemy of the people.

He is whipping these crowds up into a frenzy to the point where they really want to come after us. We have these bike rack-like barriers around the press cage, as we call it, to protect us essentially from people who might take things too far. It's unfortunate.

(…)

My scene of it, S.E., is that these opinions that these folks have at these rallies, they're shaped by what they see in the primetime hours of Fox News and what they hear from some conservative news outlets that, sort of, give them this daily diet of what they consider to be terrible things we do over here at CNN. It's very unfortunate. But it's a pitting of American against American and honestly, it needs to stop.

CUPP: Last night, you tweeted: “I'm very worried that the hostility whipped up by Trump and some of the conservative media will result in somebody getting hurt. We should treat our fellow Americans this way. The press is not the enemy.” You know, Trump's been bashing the media for a while now. What makes you think it’s at this sort of pivot point now? This really dangerous pivot point?

ACOSTA: I think it's been dangerous for some time. I was worried during the campaign that a journalist was going to get hurt and it has been building. But when you refer to members of the press as the enemy of the people, you're essentially putting targets on our backs. And it's not just some Joe Shmoe on a bar stool in Kalamazoo saying this. This is the president of the United States. And that comes with a serious force behind it. He has a lot of people throughout that are extremely angry at us.

(…)

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