Leaker Arrested: Cue the Hypocrisy!

Joe Scudder
Written by Joe Scudder

Finally, the DOJ had a leaker arrested and now we hear criticism for seizing a reporter’s records.

The media doesn’t care about a leaker arrested for lying to the FBI. But they are outraged that the Justice Department seized a reporter’s records so they could prove a case.

When Donald Trump’s lawyer’s records were seized, these people were cheering!

There are other elements of hypocrisy in this case that are exposed on Tucker Carlson’s show. This leaker played an essential part in the media lynching of Carter Page:

The Washington Post reports, “In charging Senate staffer and seizing reporter’s records, DOJ ignites debate over leak crackdown.

The Justice Department took a significant step this week toward advancing its long-promised crackdown on leaks, charging a former Senate Intelligence Committee staffer with lying to the FBI about his contacts with reporters, and seizing the phone and email records of a journalist to help make its case.

As the man charged in the brewing controversy made his first court appearance, free-press advocates warned that federal prosecutors’ heavy-handed tactics might send a further chill through the government, where officials already are reluctant to share information.

To support the charges against James Wolfe, prosecutors obtained years of phone records from New York Times reporter Ali Watkins, who had been in a romantic relationship with Wolfe and previously covered the congressional committee where he worked as security director.

“Seizing a journalist’s records sends a terrible message to the public and should never be considered except as the last resort in a truly essential investigation,” said Bruce Brown, executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. “We call on the Justice Department to explain how its actions adhered to its own guidelines for protecting newsgathering from exactly these kinds of damaging intrusions.”

A person close to the Intelligence Committee said investigators had obtained so much material from Wolfe’s devices, they would not have needed to seize Watkins’ records to bring charges.

[…]

Prosecutors in the Obama era brought nine leak cases, more than during all previous administrations combined. They called a reporter a criminal “co-conspirator” and secretly went after journalists’ phone records in a bid to identify reporters’ sources. Prosecutors also sought to compel a reporter to testify and identify a source, though they ultimately backed down from that effort.

Facing heavy criticism, then-Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. issued updates in 2015 to the department’s policy on obtaining information from members of the media. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a more aggressive posture.

Read the full story.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder is the "nom de plume" (or "nom de guerre") of a fifty-ish-year-old writer and stroke survivor. He lives in St Louis with his wife and still-at-home children. He has been a freelance writer and occasional political activist since the early nineties. He describes his politics as Tolkienesque.

Join the conversation!

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment where we can engage in reasonable discourse.

Send this to a friend