- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 31, 2018

President Trump’s supporters in Tampa, Florida, let reporter Jim Acosta know exactly what they thought of the network on Tuesday with a single refrain: “CNN sucks!”

The contentious relationship between CNN, especially Mr. Acosta, and the commander in chief’s supporters showed no signs of softening this week when its chief White House correspondent arrived at the Florida State Fairgrounds. Voters from the Sunshine State rained down boos and heckles on Mr. Acosta while he spoke with colleague Wolf Blitzer.

“You can hear there is a chorus of boos and other chants from this Trump crowd here — saying things like ‘CNN sucks,’ ‘go home,’ and ‘fake news,’” Mr. Acosta said. “Wolf, obviously all of those things are false. We’re staying right here. We’re going to do our job and report on this rally to all of our viewers tonight.”

“As you should,” the host of “The Situation Room” replied.

Mr. Acosta angered the president’s supporters in late April when he told Variety that many of them “don’t have all their faculties.”

“The problem is that people around the country don’t know it’s an act,” he told the publication. “They’re not in on the act, and they take what he says very seriously, and they take attacks from [former White House press secretary] Sean Spicer and Sarah Sanders and what they do to us on a daily basis very seriously. They don’t have all their faculties in some cases — their elevator might not hit all floors. My concern is that a journalist is going to be hurt one of these days.”

SEE ALSO: Jim Acosta says voters too stupid to grasp Trump ‘act’: ‘Their elevator might not hit all floors’

The reporter responded to the ensuing outrage by saying he was taken out of context by the “conservative meat grinder.”

“My comments have been twisted by some outlets,” Mr. Acosta tweeted April 25. “As you can plainly see, I’m not referring to Trump supporters. I am talking about people who threaten journalists.”

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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