White House Suspends Playboy Reporter’s Pass After Shouting Match With Sebastian Gorka

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Playboy magazine’s chief White House correspondent, Brian Karem, announced Friday that his press pass has been suspended following a shouting match with former White House aide Sebastian Gorka.

Karem, who is also a political analyst on CNN, has vowed to appeal the decision, which would leave him without credentials for 30 days starting Monday.

According to CNN’s media reporter, Brian Stelter, the suspension was a result of a July 11 altercation in which Gorka claimed to have been threatened by Karem.

In a statement released via Twitter Friday night, Playboy called the suspension “incredibly concerning,” adding that it was working with its lawyers on an appeal.

“Since 1953, Playboy has fought to protect First Amendment rights, and the fight must continue today,” the statement said.

In footage of the confrontation, Gorka can be heard saying, “You’re threatening me in the White House? In the Rose Garden?”

Coming into view of the camera, which is behind Karem, Gorka marches toward him, declaring, “You’re not a journalist. You’re a punk!”

As Gorka walks away, Karem yells, “Hey, Gorka, get a job!”

Sharing news of the suspension on Twitter, Gorka again called Karem a “punk,” writing that his new nickname was “Brian Karma.”

In November, CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta had his press pass temporarily revoked following an argument with President Donald Trump during which an intern attempted to grab a microphone from the reporter’s hand.

Condemning the decision, CNN said it was a retaliatory move against Acosta’s questions at a press conference, stating that then-press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders had lied while defending the suspension, leveling false allegations against him.

The outlet then took the case to court, suing the president and White House staff. The White House eventually restored Acosta’s pass and CNN dropped the suit.

Karem, a frequent critic of the Trump administration, told The Washington Post on Friday that he felt the White Hosue was simply looking to punish him for questioning the president.

“They’re claiming [the reason is] something that happened 21 days ago. I’m there every day. If this was an issue, it should’ve been brought to my attention long before now,” he said. “I know what they say the issue is, but that’s not the real issue, or they could’ve talked to me at any point in time prior to now.”

The White House did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment.

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