Playboy reporter, CNN analyst sues White House over suspended press pass

(FILE PHOTO by Getty)

Playboy White House correspondent Brian Karem, the thuggish CNN “analyst” who challenged former Trump official Sebastian Gorka to a fight last month, intends to sue the White House for having suspended his press pass over his gangster-like behavior —  behavior that, for some inexplicable reason, is slowly becoming ubiquitous among those employed at CNN

The announcement above was posted roughly two weeks after he tried unsuccessfully to pour his heart out to the White House in a long-winded letter in which he complained that he gets “no respect.”

“I write to provide you with background about myself and to tell you my side of the story regarding what happened at the Social Media Summit on July 11, 2019,” he wrote, describing the events that preceded his altercation with Gorka at the White House summit last month.

After another 850 words in which he recounted his decades of experience as an allegedly esteemed “political reporter,” he described how, after President Donald Trump finished speaking at the summit last month, the attendees congregated in the Rose Garden. And it was there where several attendees made the unforgivable mistake of mocking him like his colleagues often mock the president.

“I heard someone from the crowd say, ‘He talked to us, the real news,'” Karem wrote. “Someone else taunted me, ‘don’t cry, don’t be sad’ that the President hadn’t taken my questions, or something equally demeaning. I’m telling you. Tough Room. I get no respect…”

“So, in an attempt to defuse the situation, I did my Rodney Dangerfield: ‘Hey, looks like a group eager to be demonically possessed.’ I smiled. They smiled. We laughed. I thought that was that. Hey, at least I got a laugh.”

While it’s unclear whether legendary comedian Rodney Dangerfield ever had a bit where he accused a group of people of being “eager to be demonically possessed,” video footage from the altercation shows that some attendees did laugh when Karem made his “joke.”

However, the footage also shows that some attendees likewise laughed when Gorka replied, “And you’re a journalist, right?” But conversely, it appears everybody stopped laughing when Karem then threatened Gorka.

Watch (*Language warning):

Come on over here and talk to me, brother,” he said. “We can go outside and have a long conversation.”

But in his letter to the White House, Karem tried to excuse this rhetoric.

“I have only seen him twice in my life,” he wrote of Gorka. “I’ve never read anything that he’s written or listened to his podcasts. I only know about him from others, figured he was a character, and relished the idea of getting to know him—not fight him. So I said ‘Hey, we can talk here brother, or we can go outside and have a long conversation.'”

That’s certainly not how either White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham or Gorka interpreted his abrasive remarks.

In a preliminary press pass suspension decision reached days before Karem sent his letter, the press secretary accused Karem of “verbally accost[ing] Mr. Gorka in an apparent attempt to escalate your verbal taunts to a physical confrontation.”

She also noted that, after Gorka left the summit, Karem chased after him.

“[A]fter leaving the Rose Garden, you found, approached, and tried to engage Mr. Gorka, ignoring a White House staffer’s repeated directions to leave and instructions that ‘the press are leaving now.’ You eventually left after Mr. Gorka rebuffed you by repeatedly telling you that you were ‘done,'” Grisham wrote.

Below is Grisham’s preliminary decision:

And below is Karem’s reply:

Besides announcing a potential lawsuit on Twitter, Karem has also been kvetching to the media about the White House’s allegedly unconstitutional behavior.

“This is the White House ignoring due process, ignoring the First Amendment, going after reporters, chopping this up piecemeal, going after us one after a time,” he said in a statement to CNN senior media reporter Oliver Darcy after the suspension. “Trying very much to silence a press that has been critical of this administration. And they will use any method to do it.”

In a statement made earlier in the week, he added that as a journalist, it’s his “responsibility to ask tough questions.”

“It’s essential that I hold on to my hard pass so that I can continue to carry out my responsibility. After all, that’s what the First Amendment is all about,” he said.

It’s unclear how threatening people aligns with the First Amendment.

Karem’s attorney Ted Boutrous has echoed similar rhetoric, except he’s gone so far as to blame the president for his client’s temporary suspension, writing that the suspension is “another example of the administration’s unconstitutional campaign to punish reporters and press coverage that President Trump doesn’t like.”

It’s not clear if the president is aware Karem even exists, given as there appears to be no record of him ever tweeting about the CNN analyst.


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Vivek Saxena


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