The Big Three networks coverage so far of the Justice Department’s questionable investigation of Fox News’ James Rosen has followed a similar pattern to that of their coverage of the Kermit Gosnell case. Jan Crawford’s report on Thursday’s CBS This Morning was the first full report on growing controversy on ABC, CBS, and NBC’s morning and evening newscasts. NBC briefly covered the investigation on Tuesday’s Today, and ABC has yet to mention it.
Crawford pointed out how the DOJ’s “unprecedented” surveillance of Rosen has “really just set off a firestorm of criticism from the left and right. For the first time ever, a presidential administration is treating news reporting like a crime, and a reporter like a criminal suspect.
Anchor Charlie Rose teased the correspondent’s report by wondering if “the Obama administration gone too far in its fight to stop leaks.” Rose also pointed out that “the Obama administration is being accused of crossing a line. For the first time, a reporter is being treated like a criminal suspect for doing his job.”
Crawford then led the segment with her “firestorm of criticism” line. She outlined that “the level of government surveillance over a reporter was unprecedented. Agents monitored Rosen’s movements in and out of the State Department. They searched his personal e-mails and combed through his cell phone records.”
After playing a clip from a recent White House press conference, where colleague and former Fox News correspondent Major Garrett questioned the “standard never before seen in a leak investigation”, the CBS journalist underlined that “the investigation into Rosen has sparked a rare thing in Washington: bipartisan outrage over what some are calling ‘Obama’s war on journalism’. Just last week, the Justice Department came under fire for seizing two months of phone records from the Associated Press – action the President defended on national security grounds.”
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