“If reporters were given that information, it would be even more serious because even if your email itself was not classified, the intercept is,” he said. “NSA and FOIA material is heavily classified. I do national security work and it takes years for me to get access to a FISA warrant, I should say, or an NSA surveillance document.”
“So the mere fact that they engaged in surveillance is classified. So it would be a serious federal crime.”
After recently testifying on the House Judiciary Committee regarding the surveillance of reporters, Turley revealed that the outcome was bipartisan, as it rarely is, to fully investigate the interception of journalists. Meanwhile, this has not been the response to Tucker’s case.
Turley explained that Tucker’s emails could have been lawfully intercepted if they had been shared with someone subject to NSA surveillance, or forwarded to someone who was intercepted.
“But it doesn’t explain the more troubling questions of how that information was circulated and also how your name was not masked,” he said. “You can unmask people in a surveillance document of that kind, but it requires someone to ask for unmasking and there’d be no legitimate reason to do so here.”
As Americans cower to the powers of U.S. Intel and critics brush off the scandal as “ridiculous,” as Turley described, the concern is actually cyclical.
“We have journalists who are investigated in the Bush administration, the Obama administration, the Trump administration, the Biden administration,” he said. “And after every one of those scandals, there is the requisite apologies, promises of reform, and everyone goes away and then the cycle continues.”