Kellyanne Conway called CNN’s Jim Acosta a “smart-ass” trying to provoke a viral moment Tuesday — and quickly went viral.
The latest tiff between Acosta and the Trump White House came when he asked Conway if she could guarantee Trump would tell the truth during his remarks on immigration Tuesday.
“Yes, Jim, and can you promise that you will?” she replied. “The whole truth and nothing but the truth so help you God? Am I allowed to mention God to you?”
“I’m not the one who has the alternative facts problem like you do,” Acosta replied.
“You know that’s a cheap — make sure that goes viral,” Conway said, before telling him that such comments were one reason most people in the administration wouldn’t talk to him.
Much talking over each other followed. You can watch the video above.
The moment did go viral. CNN headlined it, “Jim Acosta presses Conway: Will Trump tell the truth?”
Or, as Fox News put it: “Kellyanne Conway embarrasses CNN’s Jim Acosta during heated exchange: ‘You’re such a smarta–‘”
Conway went on to tell Acosta that many of his colleagues don’t like him, and noted that CNN has made factual errors. (The Washington Post, meanwhile, says Trump has made 7,600 false or misleading statements during his presidency.)
The animosity between the Trump White House and Acosta is well known. Last year CNN went to court to get Acosta his White House press pass back after an incident in which Acosta challenged Trump’s false claim that an invasion was coming to the U.S. border, Trump called Acosta a “terrible person,” and the White House released doctored footage sped up to make it appear that Acosta had struck an intern trying to take away his mic.
Yes, all of these things actually happened.
The spat between Acosta and Conway occurred almost three weeks into a government shutdown over Trump’s insistence on funding for a border wall. The shutdown has led to airport security concerns and some prison guards commuting more than 400 miles, among other inconveniences.
Trump was scheduled to speak Tuesday night.