Embattled White House: Another day, another controversy

Updated

The Obama administration got something it didn’t need: another controversy. This one involves the Department of Justice (DOJ) pulling the phone records of AP reporters. While the DOJ won’t say precisely what they were looking for, they did confiscate outgoing phone calls from 20 different lines between April and May of last year. The Associated Press is calling this “a massive and unprecedented intrusion.” Attorney General Eric Holder, who did recuse himself early on in the DOJ’s investigation, called the leak that spurred this investigation “a very, very serious leak.. It put American people at risk.”

Even though the AP feels violated, they are not the intended targets of the DOJ investigation. “The target of this investigation are the government officials that broke the oath to keep classified information secretive,” Matt Miller, a former aide to the Attorney General, said on Tuesday’s show. “If you listen to people inside the administration, this really was a severe damaging leak.”

This investigation by the DOJ is geared towards finding the leak, not towards putting a halt on reporting on national security. “I don’t think this is something that shuts down further reporting on national security,” Time magazine’s Michael Scherer said. “That said, I do think there is a real concern about the depth because you can continue to see an expansion of this sort of investigative power that–sort of by popular consensus–after Watergate the American public, the press, and various administrations agreed was not ideal for our system of government. We wanted free exchange of information.”

Embattled White House: Another day, another controversy

Updated