WIUM Tristates Public Radio

AP Phone Records and Government Snooping

May 21, 2013

The Shop Talk panelists discuss the US Justice Department’s seizure of phone records from the Associated Press.  The Obama administration claimed it was a matter of national security.

This is not the first time the government has clashed with journalists, according to a column by Al Tompkins of the Poynter Institute. Past examples include:

*The Sedition Act, which was passed by Congress in 1798.

*The Espionage Act, which was passed by Congress in 1917 during the Great War (World War I).

*The Pentagon Papers, which were published in 1971.

Shop Talk panelist Rich Egger feels history has shown the government was wrong in every one of those cases. 

While the AP case has yet to fully play out, panelist Lisa Kernek pointed out it’s already having a chilling effect -  AP says some sources are now afraid to speak to its reporters.