Obama's Crackdown on Press Leaks

Pres. Obama is coming down hard on leaks to the press – prosecuting even more aggressively than predecessor Pres. Bush.

President Barack Obama takes a question from AP correspondent Jennifer Loven during a news conference at the White House, May 27, 2010. (AP)

Americans are used to leaks, from the heart of government, that rip the secrecy away from huge scandals. Abu Ghraib. Warrentless wiretapping. Watergate. 

They’re also used to White House outrage at leaks that presidents assert harm national security. 

Now, the Obama White House is doing more than complaining. It’s bringing hard-line prosecution against leakers. Real charges. Real prison time. Maybe the most aggressive hard line on leaks in history. 

Supporters say it’s high time. Critics say it’s too much. 

This Hour, On Point: leaks and transparency in the age of Obama.


Scott Shane, reporter for the New York Times. His recent article is “Obama Takes a Hard Line Against Leaks to Press.”

Jesselyn Radack, homeland security director at the Government Accountability Project. She’s a former Department of Justice ethics advisor and whistleblower in the case of the interrogation of John Walker Lindh, a.k.a. the “American Taliban.”

Gabriel Schoenfeld, senior fellow at the Hudson Institute. He’s author of “Necessary Secrets: National Security, the Media, and the Rule of Law.”

Kim Zetter, reporter for Wired who has been following the Wikileaks story. She co-wrote the blog post that broke the story of leaker Bradley Manning being turned in by hacker Adrian Lamo.

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