CNN’s Acosta back at White House after judge’s ruling

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WASHINGTON | A federal judge has ordered the Trump administration to immediately return the White House press credentials of CNN reporter Jim Acosta, even though a lawsuit over the credentials’ revocation is continuing.

U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Kelly, an appointee of President Donald Trump, announced the decision at a hearing Friday morning. The judge said Acosta’s credentials must be reactivated to allow him access to the White House complex for press briefings and other events.

CNN’s Jim Acosta speaks to journalists on the North Lawn upon returning back to the White House in Washington, Friday, Nov. 16, 2018. U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Kelly ordered the White House to immediately return Acosta’s credentials. He found that Acosta was “irreparably harmed” and dismissed the government’s argument that CNN could send another reporter in Acosta’s place to cover the White House. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Acosta, CNN’s chief White House correspondent, was back in the afternoon. The White House said it would establish new rules for orderly press conferences.

The White House revoked Acosta’s credentials last week after he and Trump sparred verbally during a press conference following the midterm elections. CNN sued and asked the judge to issue a temporary restraining order forcing the White House to give back Acosta’s credentials. The judge agreed.

CNN alleged that Acosta’s First and Fifth Amendment rights were violated when the White House revoked his “hard pass.”

The judge ordered Acosta’s pass returned for now in part because he said CNN was likely to prevail on its Fifth Amendment claim — that Acosta hadn’t received sufficient notice or explanation before his credentials were revoked or been given sufficient opportunity to respond before they were.