CNN producer-turned media watchdog Steve Krakauer described his former colleague, CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta, as a fame-seeking attention-getter who is “actively helping Trump get re-elected” while making the press look bad. “I don’t think CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta is a bad guy. I worked with him at CNN, and he was a solid, competent reporter. If Acosta’s goal was to be a great White House reporter, he could probably do it,” Krakauer wrote. “But that’s not Jim Acosta’s goal. Jim Acosta wants to be famous.” Krakauer’s media newsletter, Fourth Watch, has gained popularity for holding the press accountable, and Sunday’s edition began with the detailed critique of Acosta. “Acosta clearly aspires to use this opportunity to spar with President Trump, #Resistance Signal on Twitter and generally build his brand to move on to bigger things – a prime time show maybe, or at least a few late night TV appearances,” Krakauer wrote before pointing out the CNN reporter’s past Twitter profile background image that featured a picture of his appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” “Jim Acosta loves nothing more than Jim Acosta,” Krakauer wrote. “I’ve also half-joked that if we found out, years from now, that Acosta was actually a plant and was secretly working for the Trump re-election campaign, I wouldn’t be shocked.” Acosta has made a name for himself in the Trump era for his hostile exchanges with the president and members of his administration. He was recently scolded by Trump for referring to the daily coronavirus press briefings as “happy talk.” Acosta regularly shouts questions when it isn’t his turn to speak and famously struggled with a White House aide for possession of a microphone during a 2018 press conference, resulting in a legal skirmish over whether or not he would be able to cover the White House. Krakauer explained that Acosta “plays the role of absurd, antagonistic journalist” during Trump’s press briefings, often teeing the president up to attack him and the media. “Trump couldn’t ask for a better foe than Jim Acosta. And the reporters who are trying to do good work, get answers to very real questions, know this,” Krakauer wrote. The Fourth Watch editor said that Acosta’s exchanges with the president “are actively helping Trump get re-elected” and “make all in the press look bad.” CNN did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Earlier this month, Acosta was widely condemned for interrupting Dr. Deborah Birx during a briefing and he is regularly accused of grandstanding when given the opportunity to ask questions. Acosta has even been criticized by his White House press corps colleagues. In his new book, ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl knocked his CNN counterpart, accusing him of “playing into the explicit Trump strategy of portraying the press as the opposition party.” “The surest way to undermine the credibility of the White House press corps is to behave like the political opposition,” Karl wrote. “Don’t give speeches from the White House briefing room.”
Jim Acosta really is the worst. It’s just funny that one of CNN’s former producers is reinforcing everything we’ve been saying about him.