Attorney General Eric Holder delivered a luncheon speech on sentencing reform at the National Press Club on February 17. He then answered questions after his speech. One of the questions involved President Barack Obama and his administration’s unprecedented crackdown on leaks.
“The Obama administration has prosecuted eight alleged whistleblowers under the Espionage Act, more than all previous presidential administrations combined. What justifies this more aggressive posture toward leakers?” a person attending the speech asked.
Holder acknowledged that members of the press have been concerned “about these prosecutions.” He highlighted the “series of meetings at the Justice Department” that have taken place, where editors of major media organizations and various officials have discussed views about the cases brought against whistleblowers and how certain policies involving media might be changed.