CNN Jim Acosta’s life was “in jeopardy” when he was heckled at President Trump’s campaign event in Tampa, according to April Ryan, a contributor to the liberal network.
At the event, Trump supporters berated Acosta and others in the news media as Trump blasted them as “fake news.” Some chanted “CNN sucks” while others directed their ire at Acosta. One man was caught on video yelling, “Stop lying! Tell the truth!”
The day after the Tuesday rally, Ryan, who works as American Urban Radio Networks’ White House correspondent, appeared on Don Lemon’s CNN show. “That’s a serious moment and a serious place. And Jim Acosta’s life, in my opinion, was in jeopardy that night,” she said.
Ryan claimed that “there was a safety issue” in Tampa and seemed to suggest that maybe the press should get Secret Service protection. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was given such protection after a restaurant owner in Lexington, Virginia, refused her service, Ryan noted.
Sanders “gets taxpayer-funded security for something that she stokes, but yet, it’s OK. It’s freedom of speech for us,” Ryan said.
Ryan, of course, blamed Trump. “This president, President Donald. J. Trump, has stoked the flames for reporters to feel like their lives, their safety, their lives are in jeopardy at these rallies. … This has now gone beyond politics. This has gone into life. This has gone into changing lives.”
The Tampa crowd did no doubt get unruly.
Blacks for Trump leads “CNN Sucks” chant at Jim Acosta pic.twitter.com/LJHX1iMci4
— Jack Posobiec ⭐️⭐️⭐️ (@JackPosobiec) July 31, 2018
But it’s not clear how Ryan thought Acosta’s life was “in jeopardy.”
Afterward, Acosta complained about his treatment.
“Just a sample of the sad scene we faced at the Trump rally in Tampa. I’m very worried that the hostility whipped up by Trump and some in conservative media will result in somebody getting hurt. We should not treat our fellow Americans this way. The press is not the enemy,” Acosta wrote on Twitter.