CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta fired back at President Donald Trump’s son and Trump Organization executive Donald Trump Jr. after he described a video Acosta posted as “one of the best self-own videos ever.”
While covering President Donald Trump’s inspection of the US-Mexico border at McAllen, Texas, on Thursday, Acosta scrutinized the characterization of the border as a “crisis.” Trump and White House officials have described the border as a “crisis” as a justification for a border barrier.
“I found some steel slats down on the border,” Acosta said in a tweet with in his video, which had over 2 million views at the time of writing. “But I don’t see anything resembling a national emergency situation.. at least not in the McAllen TX [sic] area of the border where Trump will be today.”
“Of course you don’t Jim,” Trump Jr. replied hours later. “That’s because walls work. Thanks for your help proving [Donald Trump’s] point and simultaneously creating one of the best self-own videos ever!!!”
Acosta responded by referring to the 20-day partial government shutdown and calling the situation “a little strange.”
“You guys seem to be saying the current measures in place are working,” Acosta said. “Does that mean your dad should reopen the government and get federal employees back to work? #byebye.”
“Bye-bye” was a phrase Trump reportedly used as he stormed out of negotiations with Democrats on Wednesday after they rejected his $5.7 billion demand to fund a border barrier.
Acosta and Trump Jr. continued making jabs on Twitter throughout the evening. Trump Jr. referred to Acosta as “Jimbo” and claimed the correspondent was being mocked for his video.
“… You were at a part of the border WITH A WALL,” Trump Jr. tweeted. “So yes, of course it was working. Replicate that across the border & we’ll all be safer.”
Acosta pointed to Trump’s walk-backed claim that Mexico would pay for the wall and quipped: “Totally get it Don. Thanks for setting me straight. So you’re headed down to Mexico to pick up the check?”
The government shutdown, now on its 20th day, is poised to become the nation’s longest shutdown in history if the government does not reopen by Saturday. Roughly 800,000 federal employees have been affected, and public services have been disrupted.
Acosta has had numerous confrontations with White House officials — including getting his hard pass removed and then restored after a judge’s orders. The CNN correspondent has routinely challenged the administration in his news coverage, attracting both praise and condemnation.
On Tuesday, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway was the latest official to clash with the correspondent, who asked her whether Trump was going to “tell the truth” during his Tuesday Oval Office primetime address.
“Yes Jim, and can you promise that you will?” Conway asked.
“And let me get back in your face because you’re such a smart-ass most of the time,” Conway added. “And I know you want this to go viral, a lot of these people don’t like you.”