I SU Department of Justice no longer secretly keep the records of journalists during leak investigations, the White House said in a statement Saturday.
“While the White House does not intervene in criminal investigations, the issuance of subpoenas for the records of journalists in fugitive investigations is not in line with the President’s political direction at the Department, and the Department of Justice has confirmed that it will not be used to move forward, ”White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said.
In a separate statement, Justice Department spokesman Anthony Coley said the agency is “committed to taking all appropriate measures to ensure the independence of journalists.”
“Going forward, in line with the president’s direction, this Department of Justice – in a change from its old practice – will not seek a mandatory legal process in leak investigations to obtain information from members of the media who they do their job, ”Coley said Saturday, as stated by Politics.
The investment follows several alarming reports that the DOJ under President Donald Trump has silently taken journalists ’phone records and struggled to get email reports for journalists in in the New York Times, Washington Post, and CNN on a hunt for potential informants at the agency. These efforts came to light a short time ago, but presumably they have gone behind the scenes as Trump publicly lambastatu speaking as “traitors and cowards” and their administration promise to recover both on journalists and their sources in the federal government.
Justice Department regulations they typically order that news organizations be notified whenever they cite journalists ’records. However, while the Trump administration has initiated these investigations, officials have apparently left the notification part for the Biden team to deal with.
The Post was not informed that last month that the Trump administration has taken months of phone records since 2017 for three of its reporters and tried to get their email records as well. The DOJ would also target a CNN correspondent as well recently informed the outlet who obtained his telephone and email records for the months of June and July of that same year.
Friday, u Times reported in 2020 the DOJ took months of telephone records since early 2017 for four Times journalists and, as with the Post, also struggled to access its email journals. The justice department under Biden has continued the investigation, but has informed a few Times leaders of its existence, the outlet said. However, the government issued a mordate order on March 3 to prevent these leaders from becoming public with the information, according to New York Times lawyer David McCraw, who declared the move unprecedented. He said Friday that a federal court had overturned the order.
In a statement Saturday, Psaki said “no one at the White House” had been aware of the mordant order until Friday night.
Administrations on both sides of the aisle have used court orders over the years to obtain journalists ’records as part of investigations into speakers who reveal sensitive information, the Associated Press reports. However, the practice has come under fire in recent months when it was revealed that the DOJ had informed major publication of his citations almost a year after the fact.
In May, President Joe Biden publicly denounced the practice is “simply, simply wrong” and is committed to preventing the Justice Department from searching the journalists ’phone records of progress. His commitment was not immediately supported by a change in official policy, and, as AP notes, seems to contradict Psaki’s. comment first that the administration intended to use “the Holder model,” named after Obama-era Attorney General Eric Holder. The headline guidelines have reviewed certain protocols and established additional levels of review before a journalist can be cited. but he did not finish the practice at all.
Saturday’s statements by the White House and the Justice Department signal the federal government’s official reversal of envy of the controversial investigative tactic. However, some critics argue that planting practice doesn’t go away enough. Saturday, Washington Post executive editor Sally Buzbee has pushed the White House to provide full transparency and implement stricter protections for news organizations.
“We call on the Biden administration and the Department of Justice to provide a complete account of the chain of events in both administrations and to implement lasting protections to prevent any future recurrence,” he said in a statement.hared on Twitter.