Obama administration’s leak pursuits ‘unplanned’

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The New York Times analyzes the record-setting six prosecutions for leaked classified information in President Obama’s first term, noting that the actions have “heartened security hawks while drawing criticism from advocates for whistle-blowing.”

However, the Times reports, “the crackdown has nothing to do with any directive from the president, even though he is now promoting his record as a political asset.” Calling the efforts “unplanned,” Times reporters Scott Shane and Charlie Savage say they’re the result of “leftover investigations from the Bush administration, a proliferation of e-mail and computer audit trails that increasingly can pinpoint reporters’ sources, bipartisan support in Congress for a tougher approach, and a push by the director of national intelligence in 2009 that sharpened the system for tracking disclosures.”

A discussion of leak prosecutions occurred during a National FOI Day panel hosted by the First Amendment Center in March.

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