Government Spies on Reporter

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Judge Andrew Napolitano provides the following legal/historical summary to get us up to speed on one of the "so-called" (as the leftist media like to call it) scandals brewing within the Obama Administration:

The answers to these questions are obvious and well grounded. One of [Attorney General Eric] Holder's predecessors, Nixon administration Attorney General John Mitchell, went to federal prison after he was convicted of lying to Congress. The same Attorney General who told Congress he had "not been involved" in the Rosen search warrant before the DOJ he runs revealed that he not only was involved, he personally approved the decision to seek the search warrant, must know that the Supreme Court ruled that reporters have an absolute right to ask any questions they want of any source they can find. The same case held that they cannot be punished or harassed because the government doesn't like the answers given to their questions. And the same case held that the if answers concern a matter in which the public is likely to have a material interest, they can legally be published, even if they contain state secrets.
I have not been able to follow developments in this scandal at all closely, but a reader mentioned it to me at one point. That last sentence clears up a legal question I had that I did not know the answer to, and that had therefore made me reluctant to comment.

Napalitano has made it clear that the Obama Administration has not just used the IRS to suppress political opposition ahead of an election, but has wrongly and illegally spied on at least one opposition reporter. That last turn of phrase makes this sound like something that would happen in a banana republic, but if the shoe fits...

-- CAV

PS: From the last link, to a video of college students signing a card thanking the IRS for suppressing the Tea Party: "I was kind of hoping people would look at my card and laugh, but not endorse it," [Caleb Bonham] said. "That was not the case."

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