Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
It says no subpoena.
May be issued to any member of the news media or for the telephone poll records and any member of the news media.
Without the express authorization.
The attorney general did you delegate that express authorization in writing to mr.
No I don't think the refusal.
We look for this I don't think there is anything in writing with regard to -- my refusal which is again not.
-- but the question was what about the requirement in the code that you.
-- but now you recuse yourself was that express authorization.
Authority delegated to mr.
-- What's ever accuse myself and that -- he in essence because that in essence he does become the acting attorney general with all the power look at any general -- That's -- attorney general Eric Holder once again facing a congressional hearing this time getting a grilling over the Justice Department seizure of phone records from the Associated Press.
Details from twenty different phone lines where more than 100 journalists work on various stories.
Gary Pruitt the -- president reacted.
These records potentially reveal communications with confidential sources across all of the news gathering activities undertaken by the AP during a two month period.
Provide a roadmap to -- news gathering operations.
And disclose information about -- activities and operations that the government has no conceivable right to know.
The media reacted here is one.
Example from the Huffington Post on line.
This story really got the attention of everyone in the media.
Well it certainly got -- I can't get it it's the one story that's kind of brought the media together.
Left to right.
Because all of a sudden our ox is being -- -- and some believe we have to remind the American people that a free press.
Is one of those things that we often take for granted but that's essential in protecting democracy.
But there was one journalist to apparently didn't get.
The their talking points if I can use that word and that's Wolf Blitzer who said well if there's a national security issue at stake here.
Shouldn't the government have the right to tap my phone.
I know -- It shouldn't.
Well all right so national security leak or -- I mean who decides.
If it's national security vs freedom of the press well that the administration.
Of course pat has that option and so.
The Washington Post on on Friday made the point that the EP had a story on May seventh and of course John Brennan was out talking but I may -- -- so it would appear.
That they were investigating the AP for doing what they themselves are doing which is leaking so there they want they wanna be exclusive to themselves and they were willing to.
Violate the law are.
Bend the rules at least to investigate reporters.
There is a process here involves a notice period to median question.
I've talked to multiple people -- PAP and their lawyer.
They were not notified about this as the law required had caved in and had the Obama administration -- death.
At handling this the firestorm might have been -- they might have worked this out they violated the provision requiring the nose -- it's also pretty clear cal that the White House.
Well don't vote the -- -- that's exactly right to follow up on what Jim was saying there was an agreement between the White House and -- Foiling of an al-Qaeda plot for five days and then Monday came and they had another quick meeting with administration officials.
And the -- said it was -- -- go ahead and publish anyway even though the administration was going to announce.
This plot the next day so the administration goes ahead the CIA goes and -- well they violated.
Security here and we're going to investigated.
Using that as a pretext when they were going to release the information the very next day themselves.
With the White House had had gotten to make this announcement the way they wanted to Judy would we be having this investigation.
We don't know that because you know look none of us has top security clearances here right where where -- did a disadvantage but.
It's not correct that the government doesn't have the right to see his records without notifying -- news organization they do have that right.
-- an ongoing criminal investigation or issue of national security is about to be compromised and that's what the issue is here.
Did the -- Department of Justice have cause to do what it did and did it.
Was it -- at two broad and we don't know the answer that question yet Rick.
The media matters is is that liberal watchdog group today they have taken a lot of heat here for sort of pushing.
The line that the department of justice and of the Department of Justice talking points on this a piece again.
Yet and it's not just media matters I mean you had Politico.
Who really east.
Immediately launched out went well President Obama is not really watching the Justice Department that closely.
Because President Bush watched his Justice Department to closely and it was politicized and so.
President Obama -- Faire attitude is is the correct way it's really I think the talking points.
That the White House has been pushing not only media matters picks it up a political picks it up let me let me make one strong point here.
The leak had already occurred at the associated press and the Obama administration was going after trying to find out who leaked.
In the Bush Administration President Bush himself called the New York Times to say.
Let's hold back on these stories if you're gonna give away some of our sources and methods the New York Times that -- and they went forward anyway.
I think the government has the right but they need to be able to.
Put some pressure on the news organizations to see if they'll comply first.
Should the media have been making the points -- that Eric Holder refuses himself in this case I mean it it doesn't seem to be getting a lot of cover well I mean it Dana Milbank in the Washington Post said that Eric Holder -- abdicated and just mocked him on Thursday for her -- -- -- acting like he did know his own Justice Department and did did write that refusal women who knew the lawyers never wrote things down.
Comment however you could always count on as a client and also in the Washington Post details all the scandals are nothing nothing -- here folks is mullah.
What about that I mean the fact that that Eric Holder apparently was supposed to you know and put all of this down in writing and.
And doesn't do -- this is the nation's top law enforcement officer.
Well this is sort of typical of what you see is the informality of governance of the Obama administration.
They believe that word of mouth is sufficient when it shouldn't be.
They believed that management has something left underlings they don't seem to take much of the acts of governance as seriously as we might have some.
Big story of the week though.
Chris Matthews the thrill up the leg is gone.
Filter by section