As Twitchy reported Thursday night, the Justice Department seized the phone and email records of New York Times reporter Ali Watkins in a search for evidence against former Senate intel staffer James Wolfe, who was charged with lying to investigators about leaking to the press.
Many journalists were appalled by the Justice Department’s actions, and The Daily Beast’s Sam Stein said it was “a gross, gross use government power” and “a chilling decision.”
CNN’s Jake Tapper decided to try a little thought experiment Friday, posting this tweet:
Even if you side with this president over those who challenge him and his administration, it is important to remember the precedent actions violating press freedoms set going forward. Perhaps when it is not your guy who is in the White House.https://t.co/mU4XWf33hl
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) June 8, 2018
People on both sides of the aisle were outraged.
@jaketapper come on dude this tweet is a DIRECT bias against the president. These tweets are why half the country if not more think youre a complete joke. I agree with the subject matter here but dude quit with the combative bs. https://t.co/yie8ovHtFp
— Youngblood (@BASaner71) June 9, 2018
This is how dictators control their press and citizens. @GOP who always screams about their constitutional rights, he’s wiping his fat, saggy ass with it and you have done nothing. https://t.co/5DrBGLRZfc
— tc (@Jafo56) June 8, 2018
— Nattydread (@nattydead) June 8, 2018
— Mike Pichini (@MikePichini) June 8, 2018
Could not agree with you more Jake!! I can not stand hypocrites. We have a constitution for a reason and it should be followed. All the people on the right who are cheering for this remember this when it is a amendment you care deeply for. This is not ok
— Jennifer Hertzler (@JenniferHertzl2) June 9, 2018
We hear you Jake. Watching the Handmaid’s Tale and the Boston Globe masacre scene is basically not a stretch with this admin…Stay safe and report on…#FirstAmendmentOrDeath
— TerriPlaysHere (@TerriPlaysHere) June 9, 2018
Literally “The Handmaid’s Tale”!
I have never seen such an assault on the press. I can’t grasp how dangerous this administration has become. Or the willingness of so many to support it because right this minute they can get a few extra bucks.
— ElizasL (@whyfullyblind) June 9, 2018
I look forward to all the angry replies to this tweet from people who don't look at the link. https://t.co/jTeySYMGEc
— Kyle Feldscher (@Kyle_Feldscher) June 8, 2018
The thought experiment, though, is that Tapper’s tweet about “this president” and believing in press freedom even “when it is not your guy who is in the White House” is actually a quote lifted directly from a 2013 blog post warning about the precedent set by the Obama administration when it labeled Fox News’s James Rosen a “co-conspirator” and seized the phone records of Rosen’s parents. So “this president,” in context of the tweet, is Barack Obama.
But you’d have to click the linked blog post to get it. Pretty sneaky, Tapper.
Posting this was an intellectual experiment and the results were sadly what they were. https://t.co/8h1oeV7qK3
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) June 9, 2018
Tapper re-posts 5 year old blog critical of Obama DOJ targeting Fox reporter. Hilarity ensues. https://t.co/2ifhmHh8wB
— Daniel Dufresne (@dandufresne) June 9, 2018
Great experiment by Jake Tapper. Indignant outrage without actually reading his article (or checking date for reference). Outrage without trying to understand intent is why we are where we are today https://t.co/pqNqn9KD3s
— Heather Lara (@OurLivingWorld) June 9, 2018
Perhaps the first and only time that reading the comments on a well-known person’s tweets is illuminating. And depressing.
— Adam Felber (@adamfelber) June 9, 2018
The faux outrage from Democrats over this administration's war on leaks is fairly hilarious. https://t.co/uKMph7qG1U
— Ben Guthrie Stewart (@benguthstew) June 9, 2018
Read the replies. People still don't get it.
Remember, your guy won't be in office forever.
The other side will get in and do the same thing to your guys.
Any you will scream holy hell.
You were warned…………… https://t.co/ozfl2jAf5p
— Robin Oyl (@schmiedsrr) June 9, 2018
— ??? ?????? (@TDurbin) June 9, 2018
Is Eric Holder's 'biggest regret' supposed to make James Rosen feel better? http://t.co/wZRENFbb0U
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) October 29, 2014