>> new york city is the largest city united states . we all think of it as a sprawli sprawling metropolis. it is easy to forget you are on an island in the north atlantic . manhattan is surrounded by water. staten island is surrounded by water. all the new york city boroughs have coastlines and it is possible to do some very good fishing, so north atlantic fishing in se brooklyn, new york . i know this because i caught this fish in brooklyn on friday morning before i came to work. look at the size of that striper that i caught in brooklyn . you can fish in prook lynn. and there are a lot of people who to it for fun and people who do it commercially and on june 14th , 1971 , at a fish company in brooklyn , a very strange thing happened. the previous day, “the new york times ” had started publishing the pentagon papers along four multivolume narrative history of a war in vietnam. this thing was never supposed to be made public, but it was stolen from the government by a whistleblower who thought the public should have access to the same information about the war the government had. it was smuggled to the “new york times ” an the times made the difficult decision to publish the papers and when the times published the first installment on june 13th , 1971 , the paper must have been waiting for the other shoe to drop. they knew what they were doing. how big a storm this was going to cause. they were waiting. they must have been waiting for what would be the inevitable response from the government, the demand they cease publication and all the rest, but they published this thing on june 13th and there was no response from the government. and that’s because it turns out that on june 14th , the day after they started publishing the pentagon papers , there had been an angry, threatening telegram written by the attorney general to the “new york times ” demandinging that they cease publication of these document, but the fbi accidentally sent the telegram to a fish company in brooklyn instead of to the “new york times .” and so what the “new york times ” heard the day they published the pentagon papers and the day after was nothing. and this fish company in brooklyn must have been very, very confused by the angry telegram they got from the attorney general. eventually, the attorney general and fbi got it together and stent telegram to the “new york times ” demanding the return of the pentagon papers and no further publication. the times said no. they published on the 13th, the 14th, the 15th, then the government got a temporary restraining order blocking them from publishing anything further. pentagon papers was the first time the government had used courts to — based on national security grounds. and that temporary restraining order they got of the pentagon papers , that ended up becoming a major federal first amendment case. the newspaper involved in the case within a week had lost the district court level. they appealed to the circuit court level and by the end of the month, june 30th , 1971 , the case had gone to the supreme court . they started publishing it on the 13th. by the 30th, the supreme court rule thag the government could not block newspapers from publishing this stuff. some government lost that effort to block the press from publishing something that the press wanted to publish but the government said would be dangerous to publish. the government lost at the supreme court . but that does not mean they got over it. you know how in watergate , the burglars r were called the plumbers? they were not called the plumbers because they dressed up like plumbers. the reason they were breaking into the various places they broke into was that they were plugging leaks. they were plumbers deal wg leaks, but these were leaks of information. they were trying to find out who in government was providing secret information to the news media, including the pentagon papers . that was the whole orgin of the plumbers and there by stop the press from publishing something the government does not want published. it has been really important from the beginning of our republic. there is a reason the freedom of the press is the first amendment. it’s because the founders knew how important it was to tell the truth and they knew the interpreter temptations for people in power to stop the press from doing that. they said amendment one, we are taking sides of this fight. we know it is going to persist throughout this nation. we are taking sides and we are taking the side of the press. the press housed the constitution’s protection clearly in these inevitable fights and that is a fundamental part of what our country is. i take it as a sign of their wisdom in being so clear on the matter in that these are not seen as settled. they keep happening all over again in every century, ever presidency just about. we need to reread and demand respect from the first amendment because this is an important fight. the important fights are the ones that don’t go away. at tend of 2005 , just decided they always needed warrants before, they didn’t anymore. the response to the administration to the publication of that story was not just to deny the story or to express unhappiness with the fact that this government policy was known and they wanted to keep it secret. the response from the administration was instead to demand that reporter be thrown in prisen. that he be compelled to reveal his sources, to reveal who had given him the secret information. they subpoenaed him to demand he give up his sources and jim made clear in his fighting with the court, that the administration was really using everything it had to go after him. quote, the first subpoena issued to me was the culmination of a long campaign against me by the bush administration and it’s supporters. president bush called the — a shameful act and the administration and its supporters publicly speculated about me for espionage. after that, an organized campaign of hate mail was launched. meanwhile, protesters supporting the bush administration picketed my office. pundits and bloggers supporting the bush administration took to tv and internet to call for the white house and justice department to prosecute me for espiona espionage. going after reporters, using the full power of the federal government to stop reporters from publishing things the government did not want published. pete hoekstra , quote, they will be sitting in jail by the end of the year unless they reveal their sources. around the time that the right had the torches and pitch forks out, abc news reported that the government was not just demanding reporters reveal their sources and threatened to put them in jail if they did not, they were secretly going through journalist’s phone records. accord iing to a senior federal law enforcement official, the incoming and outgoing numbers were being monitored by the government as part of a widespread leak investigation. the title was federal source to abc news, we know who you’re calling. it’s chilling, right? you’re a reporter. trying to find out what the government is doing, but if you find out too much about what the government is doing, hey, you might end up in jail. you certainly can’t tell your sources that you’ll keep their identity safe. you can’t tell your sources that they can trust you to keep their identities out of it. if you have to tell them, yeah, they’re probably going to put me in prison until i tell them. this is chilling. this is chilling on purpose and those details reported by abc news in 2006 to reporters to try to fair it out who was leaking to these reporters, right, it appears to be exactly what the administration is doing now. it is exactly the same thing. in an investigation that appears to be related to a p p reporting on the cia busting up an al-qaeda bomb plot a few years ago, the justice department has notified the ap that at least 20 of their phone lines including numbers of their reporters were swept up in a dragnet by the justice department . two months worth of phone records were obtained by the fbi . it is over and done with. when the ap published that story about a year ago about the bomb plot, the response on the right was kind of a mini version of the torches and pitch forks that came out in the 2000s . but in this case because it’s a democratic p president, the outrage on the right was directed at not just the reporters, it was against the government. they were alleging that the administration doesn’t care enough about classified information being leaked. if they really cared, they would freaking investigate it. they would chase this thing down.
>> what the president ought to be saying is that this is very damaging to the country. and we’re going to do everything we can to get to the bottom of it, whether it involves my white house or where ever in the intelligence community .
>> well, we certainly need to have an investigation of what has happened.
>> the question is, do we really have an independent and aggressive investigation because these leaks are very, very disturbing.
>> republicans last june demanding a serious investigation into these dastardly leaks. well, they got their investigation and as part of that, the attorney general himself was investigated as to whether maybe he was the leak to those ap reporters or perhaps did he know who was the leak and because the attorney general himself was interviewed as part of the investigation, he could not himself head up the ingag so, he recused himself to avoid a conflict of interest, but two u.s. attorneys were appointed to investigate the leaks. we now know as part of this investigation that we got this unprecedented tracking of 20 timpbt phone lines and that justice department just decided to do that on their own. never had to get permission from a court. there had been a media shield law that said if you want to wiretap reporters, you have to get a court to sign off on it. a few new details. one additional name today in terms of ap reporters and editors who were targeted by the subpoena of their phone records. we know it was outgoing phone calls that were subpoenaed by the justice department . not necessarily the incoming numbers or duration of those calls. the deputy attorney general who was in charge of this investigation also said today that supposedly, the content of these reporter’s calls was not monitored. it was just — out and what number it went to, we got the white house denying any involvement or knowledge. the attorney general saying this was out of his call, he was out of the loop. we got the ap today, more livid today than yesterday that this is happening as they get more information from the government about what their news bureaus and reporters were subjected to and we’ve got all of this happening within the context of this great american fight. the inevitable prime and pressure of an aggressive free press. the repeated familiar overreaching efforts of the government to stop the press from doing that. and most importantly, the fact that the writers of our constitution knew that government would always be tempted to act this way and that’s why they made it very, very clear that our constitution takes sides. this fight is inevitable, but in america, the winner of this fight is also inevitable. so, how is the p going to win this fight? joining us now is david schultz , thank you for being with us tonight.
>> thank you, rachel.
>> i’m sure that long exposition of the facts and my take on them does not exactly comport with yours, but in term of the ap ‘s role in this, i should ask you —
>> i think you got it just right.
>> it is a constant balancing act in the united states . freedom of the press or national security or anything the government doesn’t want disclosed. is the it ap ‘s position that the justice department is within its rights to be investigating these leaks? it’s just that they are doing it in a way that is too rushed.
>> sure. i think the key, there is an inherent conflict between the government’s ability to keep secrets ab the ability of people to oversee their government, that you have to have access to government information . you need confidential sources to give you u that information or the only things you’re going to know about the government is what they’re going to tell you. the real problem here is is that in the mess after watergate — to set up rules that would help us not overreach, the give the press a zone of protection they would operate in. those were in the form of regulations that were imposed, adopted by the adopt of justice and they formed provisions. one was that the government was required under the regulation not to go after reporters information unless it was critical. number two, they could only go after it if there were no alternative sources. they had to exhaust all of their alternative sources and number three, if they were going after it, they had to make it as narrow as possible so they weren’t interfeeing with the press and the fourth one is that they are supposed to negotiate with the press ahead of time. go to the press and say we need this information from you. here’s why and have a negotiation over how broad it is. what happens here is that the regulations were just ignore d. the jus disdidn’t, they said we follow it to the letter, but this is really an unprecedented action. they weren’t just individual. they were — they were the bureau, the north beer row. the washington bureau. in those bureaus, 100 or more ap reporters — about who they were calling —
Freedom, security at odds again in DoJ seizure of AP records