DOJ Seizes AP Phone Records, POTUS Knows Nothing

by William Teach | May 14, 2013 7:21 am

One thing that seems to be missing is the timeline for when the records were seized and when the warrant was provided to the Associated Press. This appears to be a case of delayed notification, what the Left called “sneak and peek” back when Bush was POTUS, if a warrant was even provided. No article mentions the word “warrant”

(AP[1]) 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 outgoing calls for the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, for general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and for the main number for the AP in the House of Representatives press gallery, according to attorneys for the AP. It was not clear if the records also included incoming calls or the duration of the calls.

In all, the government seized the 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 where phone records were targeted, on a wide array of stories about government and other matters.

Did they have a warrant? What judge signed off on it? Oh, and

(Fox News[2]) Rules published by the Justice Department require that subpoenas of records of news organizations must be personally approved by the attorney general, but it was not known if that happened in this case. The letter notifying AP that its phone records had been obtained through subpoenas was sent Friday by Ronald Machen, the U.S. attorney in Washington.

Did he sign off on this? He was bound by law to do so, or delegate the duty, but, either way, he would have had to know about it. One would think that for such a massive intrusion of the 1st Amendment the AG might inform the president

(The Hill[3]) The White House on Monday distanced President Obama from the Department of Justice’s seizure of Associated Press telephone records.

“Other than press reports, we have no knowledge of any attempt by the Justice Department to seek phone records of the AP,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said in a statement.

At what point does the White House actually know something? Obama didn’t seem to be involved with anything while our consulate and CIA annex in Benghazi was assaulted. After his regularly scheduled meeting with SecDef Leon Panetta, Obama disappeared. He knows nothing about the illegal harassment of whistleblowers. He knew nothing of Fast and Furious, a project involving multiple Executive Office agencies that walked guns across the border into a sovereign nation without informing that nation. He seemingly knows nothing of the IRS scandal. What, exactly, does this president know? For someone who complained about Bush and would say “the buck stops here”, nothing ever seems to make it to his desk. Obama is a president divorced from what’s going on around him, or at least says he is.

There will be pointed questions for Eric Holder during the newly announced House hearing on Wednesday, and one of the questions asked should be “did you inform President Obama?” It’s high time to stop the imperial president.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove[4]. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach[5].

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