The Secret Service said Wednesday that they "in no way intended to impede those rights or the media's access to a Secret Service protectee" when they prevented CBS News correspondent Errol Barnett from asking Jared Kushner questions. Barnett was attempting to question Kushner, a special adviser to President Trump, on a plane about the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
In the video, which Barnett posted to Twitter, he identified himself as a journalist with CBS News and displayed his White House credentials as Kushner and the Secret Service agents were exiting the plane. But the Secret Service agent covered Barnett's camera and told him "I don't give a damn who you are, there's a time and a place."
In its statement Wednesday, the Secret Service said "the actions were taken solely in response to an abrupt movement by an unknown individual who later identified themselves as a member of the media."
Barnett said on CBSN after the statement came out that he "took issue with the characterization that I did not identify myself because it was the first thing I did."
But Barnett noted that after he posted the video, a Secret Service agent not involved in the incident contacted him and said that covering the camera violates protocol. "So the Secret Service is put into a position with this video going viral and it really striking a cord with so many people to say publicly," Barnett said.
Barnett said that up until this incident, "100 percent" of his interactions with Secret Service were positive. Barnett said that's why he thinks this video is "so unusual." Barnett said he thought the video went viral because it was so unusual.
The reason Kushner is of particular interest on theis that he was a key part of forging a relationship with Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman and massive arms sale to the kingdom, "CBS This Morning" reports. Mr. Trump does not want to halt the deal because he argues it would harm U.S. manufacturers.
"He was behind this $110 billion arms deal that the president is reluctant to terminate amid questions of what happened to Jamal Khashoggi. So the question I was preparing to ask was, 'What do you make of the Saudi denials and the White House says that Jared Kushner, National Security Adviser John Bolton spoke with the Crown Prince last week," Barnett said.
"What's key about this is, when is the time and place to ask Jared Kushner a question? He does not make himself available and there are so many more questions to be asked," Barnett told "CBS This Morning." "But these questions persist. There's an open invitation to speak with Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump about this incident and what they think the U.S. should do next."