On Friday, during an Oval Office meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, President Donald Trump was asked by CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta to defend his previous comments that there was an attempted "coup d'etat" against him, after which Trump pointedly declined to do so.
Discussing the issue with Wolf Blitzer, Acosta sharply criticized the president for saying things that he couldn't stand behind.
"I don't think he understands what he's saying, there, when he says an attempted coup," said Acosta. "I suppose, he understands what the literal definition of an attempted coup is, but I think he is obviously engaging in hyperbole. He knows he's engaging in hyperbole. And when he uses those kinds of words, he's hoping that when he's insulated inside his own conservative media cocoon, that nobody is going to challenge him on that."
"That's why he was saying there in those comments, 'well, the fair media, they know what's going on, they know what really happened,' that is a code word for, well, when we start asking questions about whether or not he actually means that there was an attempted coup, that he can't really defend those comments," Acosta continued.
"And you just saw that demonstrated there," he added. "He could not defend that comment, when I asked him about it, just a few moments ago, whether or not he believes an actual attempted coup happened with that Mueller investigation, because, obviously, one did not occur, Wolf."