The video shared by White House press secretary Sarah Sanders of CNN's Jim Acosta at a White House news conference — and used to justify the revocation of Acosta's press credentials — was sped up, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said on Sunday.
Conway disagreed with claims that the video had been "doctored," however.
“That’s not altered, that’s sped up,” Conway told "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace on Sunday. “They do it all the time in sports to see if there’s actually a first down or a touchdown. So I have to disagree with the, I think, overall description of this video being doctored as if we put somebody else’s arm in there.”
The video came from a news conference on Wednesday in which Acosta attempted to ask President Donald Trump questions about possible indictments by special counsel Robert Mueller. Trump attempted to ignore Acosta and move to a different journalist, but Acosta, CNN's chief White House correspondent, declined to give up the microphone when a White House intern reached for it.
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Later that evening, Sanders tweeted out a video that appeared to show Acosta bringing his arm down on the arm of the intern during the tense exchange, a motion that Conway told Wallace "looked like a karate chop almost.”
The White House later suspended Acosta's press access, with Sanders claiming Acosta "put his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern." Sanders appeared to have been trying to back up that claim with the sped-up video.
Wallace pressed Conway on the White House’s tumultuous week with the press, in which Trump suggested he may need to look at pulling credentials for other journalists who fail to show “respect.”
“When you’re in the White House, this is a very sacred place for me, a very special place,” Trump told reporters Friday. “You have to treat the White House with respect. You have to treat the presidency with respect.”
The White House has since stood by its decision to keep Acosta away from the White House, saying it was deserved given the way he had allegedly behaved at the press conference.
"We stand by our decision to revoke this individual's hard pass," Sanders tweeted Wednesday. "We will not tolerate the inappropriate behavior clearly documented in this video."
Wallace asked Conway whether the president is looking at pulling credentials for reporters who write or ask questions the president doesn’t like.
“Chris, if what you described was the standard, we would have cleaned out the entire building two years ago,” Conway said. “He gets a lot of unfair treatment by the press.”
She called Trump's comments Friday "instructive."
“You have to show respect to the White House, to the presidency certainly, to the president,” Conway said.