Investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson thinks the media "should all be embarrassed" for not holding the Obama administration and the Holder Justice Department accountable for their lack of transparency in the Fast and Furious gun walking scandal.
Appearing on WMAL radio in Washington, D.C., Friday morning, Attkisson provided a detailed account of Thursday's court decision forcing the DOJ to finally reveal a list of documents the administration has concealed from Congress via a claim of executive privilege. The court order released on the same day as Holder's surprise announcement of his resignation has led many to speculate that, perhaps, the two stories are not unrelated.
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When I asked Attkisson about the fact that Holder has been forced to reveal the documents only after a FOIA request from the non-profit advocacy group Judicial Watch (the same group that successfully compelled similar disclosures in the Benghazi scandal as well as the IRS scandal) Attkisson turned her focus on the media's apparent abdication of its traditional investigative role as the country's Fourth Estate.
"We should all be embarrassed that we're leaving it up to a conservative watch dog group to do the job that I think we should all be doing," the former CBS reporter said. "If the media pressed harder, reported more on it, made a bigger issue of these inexcusable restrictions of information under this administration maybe something could be done about it. If you reported it every day on the evening news, I think that the drumbeat might actually change things."
I then asked her why she thought the media was under-reporting the Obama administration's absence of transparency especially considering the level of criticism and scrutiny past administrations received by some of the very same news organizations:
I don't know because this, to me, is not a partisan issue. It's a matter of press, our responsibility, our freedoms, what we're supposed to do and be allowed to do, the rights the public has. These are all very important things regardless of what administration’s in office. And, quite frankly, these things have been tightening up under all administrations in my view. They're just getting worse every year and are worse than ever under the Obama Administration and I don't know why … The media will write letters, all the networks and most of the major news outlets have written letters of protest to the White House over various policies but we don't really report them as news stories we act like that's sort of a "inside family business" not to be covered.