The White House is defending its latest publicly known case of targeting a journalist. The Justice Department tracked Fox News reporter James Rosen’s phone records and State Department visits, and even received a search warrant to read his personal emails. Rosen was investigated for obtaining details of a secret government report in 2009 on North Korea. The report warned the North Korean regime would likely respond with more nuclear tests if the U.S. managed to win additional U.N. sanctions. The government has named Rosen a potential “aider, abettor and/or co-conspirator” in its case against Rosen’s alleged source, State Department security adviser Stephen Jin-Woo Kim. On Monday, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney declined to comment on the Rosen case directly, but said President Obama stands behind efforts to crack down on leaks.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney: “He is a strong defender of the First Amendment and a firm believer in the need for the press to be able to conduct investigative reporting and facilitate a free flow of information. He is also, as a citizen and as commander-in-chief, insistent that we protect our secrets, that we protect classified information, and that leaks — that we take very seriously the leaks of classified information because leaks can endanger the lives of men and women in uniform and other Americans serving overseas for our country.”
The James Rosen case emerged just days after it was revealed the Justice Department seized the work, home and cellphone records of almost 100 AP reporters and editors without a court warrant.