Obama and the FISA Court: Reputations are at stake here in a big way

The abuses at the FISA Court have now been made a little clearer thanks to the Memo that was released by The House Intelligence Committee and President Donald Trump. There are some high-level reputations on the line, including former President Obama, his admin, his cabinet, and the Surveillance Court itself. In this article, The Wall Street Journal  draws a comparison to standards. What are they and whose are better?

As Written and Reported By James Freeman for The Wall Street Journal:

This column is trying to imagine how an editor at The Wall Street Journal would treat a draft article alleging a political campaign adviser was secretly working for a foreign government if the story featured uncorroborated opposition research paid for by a rival campaign. If the writer of the draft article assured the editor that readers would not be told where the information originated, it’s a safe bet this would not increase the chances of publication.

This column is also trying to imagine the conversation that would ensue if a reporter or writer then tried to persuade the editor by appealing to the authority of Yahoo News.

Of course the Journal isn’t the only media outlet that enforces standards. Many organizations strive to ensure basic accuracy and fairness. Can it possibly be true that the evidentiary standards for obtaining a federal warrant allowing the government to spy on the party out of power are significantly lower than in a professional newsroom?

Today the American people are finally able to see the memo from the majority staff of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence alleging abuse of government surveillance powers during the last presidential campaign. Many will be appalled that, at least according to the memo, on October 21, 2016 the Department of Justice and the FBI obtained a court order authorizing electronic surveillance on a Trump campaign volunteer without telling the court that Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee had paid for at least some of the research presented.

The memo further states that according to the head of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, corroboration of the research was in its “infancy” at the time the government requested and received approval for this surveillance. Is it that easy to spy on the party out of power?………


Obama and the FISA Court – WSJ

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