Now more than ever, Obama needs his media partners to rally the wagons against those who are trying to learn whether their failure to act caused the deaths of four Americans in the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
Yet, at this very time of need, Holder's Justice Department may have turned Obama’s media allies against him.
AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt sent a warning to the media that this can happen to you when he called the Obama administration’s actions a, “massive and unprecedented intrusion” into how news organizations gather the news.
Pruitt went on to explain the devastating impact of the Justice Department's actions, writing,
“There can be no possible justification for such an overbroad collection of the telephone communications of The Associated Press and its reporters. These records potentially reveal communications with confidential sources across all of the newsgathering activities undertaken by the AP during a two-month period, provide a road map to AP’s newsgathering operations and disclose information about AP’s activities and operations that the government has no conceivable right to know.”
A little truth to the formerly complicit Fourth Estate: The actions of the Justice Department are a direct attack on your ability to protect sources, develop stories and have those you speak with have any expectation that their anonymity will be preserved.
If Richard Nixon had Eric Holder doing his bidding at Justice, Deep Throat’s identity would not have remained a secret for more than 30 years, and it is likely few would have ever heard of Woodward and Bernstein.
Every reporter instinctively knows this, and their willingness to turn a blind eye toward Obama’s Chicago way of governing has hopefully been irrevocably shattered.
The first test will not be the IRS story that everyone in D.C. is scrambling to uncover. Instead, it is Benghazi.
Yesterday, the media were subjected to a standard Obama Jedi mind trick when he declared, “There’s no there, there,” referencing the Benghazi hearing in the House last week.
Now the only question is will the media go back to their mesmerized state of awestruck obedience, or will they wake up and do their jobs?
How aggressively they pursue Benghazi will provide the answer. The ball is in the media's court.
Rick Manning (@rmanning957) is the vice president of Public Policy and Communications for Americans for Limited Government.