Obama DOJ Secretly Monitored AP Reporters’ Phone Records

In another scandalous bombshell, designed to take the media's focus off of Benghazi, the Department of Justice has been fingered for secretly obtaining telephone records for reporters and editors for the Associated Press.

Townhall provides the AP's story:

The Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative's top executive called a "massive and unprecedented intrusion" into how news organizations gather the news. The records obtained by the Justice Department listed incoming and outgoing calls, and the duration of each call, for the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and the main number for AP reporters in the House of Representatives press gallery, according to attorneys for the AP. In all, the government seized those records for more than 20 separate telephone lines assigned to AP and its journalists in April and May of 2012. The exact number of journalists who used the phone lines during that period is unknown but more than 100 journalists work in the offices whose phone records were targeted on a wide array of stories about government and other matters.

In a letter of protest sent to Attorney General Eric Holder on Monday, AP President and Chief Executive Officer Gary Pruitt said the government sought and obtained information far beyond anything that could be justified by any specific investigation. He demanded the return of the phone records and destruction of all copies. "There can be no possible justification for such an overbroad collection of the telephone communications of The Associated Press and its reporters. These records potentially reveal communications with confidential sources across all of the newsgathering activities undertaken by the AP during a two-month period, provide a road map to AP's newsgathering operations, and disclose information about AP's activities and operations that the government has no conceivable right to know," Pruitt said.

One wonders just what they were looking for. Was it more whistleblowers? Perhaps it was those with a political ax to grind. After all, the Obama administration has already had their Internal Revenue Service (IRS), yes the same IRS that is to enforce Obamacare, targeting conservative and Tea Party groups. We've seen the call for that investigation to be started.

AP President and CEO Gary B. Pruitt wrote a scathing letter of protest to Attorney General Eric Holder:


The Justice Department then responded with this Orwellian doublespeak:

We take seriously our obligations to follow all applicable laws, federal regulations, and Department of Justice policies when issuing subpoenas for phone records of media organizations. Those regulations require us to make every reasonable effort to obtain information through alternative means before even considering a subpoena for the phone records of a member of the media. We must notify the media organization in advance unless doing so would pose a substantial threat to the integrity of the investigation. Because we value the freedom of the press, we are always careful and deliberative in seeking to strike the right balance between the public interest in the free flow of information and the public interest in the fair and effective administration of our criminal laws.

Wait, what? You value the press, then apparently just willy-nilly fail to notify them that you are obtaining their phone records, both personal and business? Was there even a warrant issued? It sounds like they were playing fast and furious with the law, especially the Fourth Amendment. It sounds like the press is not happy about their messiah, Barack Obama, trampling on their First Amendment rights.

This story is developing.

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  • A_Nobody

    Why does everyone seem to think it was just AP records?? Is it because that's the only group they were caught monitoring?? Seems like the investigation should dig deeper.

  • JuneUSA

    So they fired One Person. I thought he was just appointed, how much could he have had to do with what went on before? Holder is the one who has to go. He is in charge. Are we supposed to be so stupid as to think this will cure the problem? Holder only enforces the laws that can be used against us. He does not enforce the Constitution ,although he took an oath of office to do just that. That makes him a traitor and a liar, Same goes for Obama. We need Holder to go now.

  • TAM44

    Our country was infected with the worst disease known to man on 2008 November the 4th as it cause instant deaths to our freedom as we knew it. This has been the most costly disease ever costing more money than all the wars and natural disasters, and it's spreading like wild fire completely out of control.

  • dextermassolettisr

    Sounds like things are getting pretty close to shoot on sight -- the only question is, is it going to be them or us.
    We must thank them for telling us who they are.
    No one is above The Law.

    • LeSellers

      Those who enforce the law (all the while ignoring it) deem themselves above the law. And their actions demonstrate their contempt for it and for us, as well.

      Mr. O'bama, will there ever be any Jobs>

    • dextermassolettisr

      So I guess you figure the Jehadi president is going to start the shooting so he can get his 72 virgns -- toobad they will all look like Yasser Arafat.

      Why would you ask this liar any queston -- let alone about jobs when all he has created is unemployment? the shovels-ready jobs have gone to gravediggers.

    • LeSellers

      It's a rhetorical question. I don't expect an answer, but if it makes someone think about O'bama's aims, his methods, and his handlers, it will have achieved its purpose.

      Mr. O'bama, will there ever be any Jobs?

    • LeSellers

      Your first conjecture is a non-sequitor: I have no idea to what you refer.

      However, since there is evidence that both Yassir Arafat and Barack O'bama were/are members of the "down low club", it may be that Barry wouldn't mind their looking like his soul mate.

      Mr. O'bama, will there ever be any Jobs?

  • http://www.facebook.com/kenneth.bowman.773 Kenneth Bowman

    Laughable the answers provided by the Kenyan's administration. Fools their useful idiots but nobody else however.

    This is like asking Adolph Hitler what he knows about the Death Camps!

  • afanaglenn

    The most crooked justice department ever just continues to do what it knows best. Holder should resign. If he had a conscience and cared about this country even a little, he would resign. This is jus so outrageous. A firing squad would be too good for him, and Obama.

    • true patriot

      Eric "cutthroat" Holder(man) should be behind bars along with the twin-criminals Obozo and Hitlery.

  • bikerdogred1

    He should be called the FOOL OF JUSTICE nothing short of the truth.

  • btgould

    Impeach, impeach, impeach.

  • gingercake5

    Hmmm, who was it that got in trouble for this type of thing in the UK recently? Oh yeah, it was Rupert Murdoch and his media empire. It was the end of the world for the liberals. Now either they don't know about this one (with Holder), they don't care, or they think it's racist.

  • http://www.facebook.com/danny.strunk.50 Danny Strunk

    Tell me ,how many violations of their oaths of office will it take to remove this crooked administration? I won't hold my breath waiting for any answer.

  • ste1021

    Chickens coming home to roost? This is even more interesting considering the AP has been in bed with Obama since day one.

  • servant1jkb
  • Jeff Noncent

    Obama and his administration deserves the death penalty he is the commander and chief

  • agbjr

    Hey, Holder, the 1798 Sedition Act expired in 1801 so you're over two-hundred years late using your perceived 'authority'. FYI, when it expired the Sedition Act was well on track to be struck down by the Supreme Court ... ever hear of the First Amendment?

  • john

    Well...well...well, look who is calling the kettle black. The media who has protected this piece of crap administration for over 4 years now...the media that absolutely refuses to tell the truth about anything having to do with this administration....the very media that has lied through their teeth as much or more than this administration....the worthless media that is absolutely in love with everything liberal, corrupt, and communist......suddenly when they themselves are treated a little bit unfairly by this excessively corrupt administration, they have the gal to complain about it !!

    Well here is what I think... SHUT THE HELL UP YOU WHINNEY ASS CRY BABY PIECES OF CRAP! You the media who have sold your soles to the devil, and have in return prosecuted to no end every Conservative Patriotic American...and their families... that would dare to challenge this spawn of Satan administration, and now you suddenly have a problem! All I have to say to that is that Rotting in Hell for your actions would be too good for your sorry worthless asses....so there...take a bite out of that apple and choke on the bitter flavor.

    • Renellin

      Cooler heads--I completely understand how you feel, but if the press and the media finally begin to see the light and start actually doing their jobs we would all be better off. Hey, left wing media! Want to get rid of Rush Limbaugh? Start telling the truth. His job will no longer be needed.

  • Al Chemist

    Holder and the DOJ are "bug(er)ing their friends at the AP now?