Breaking: Most Journalists Mis-Report Release of OLC Memos
President Obama has finally — after 2 years and 14 requests — agreed to let the intelligence committees see the Office of Legal Counsel Memos that authorize the lethal targeting of US citizens.
Kudos to Ron Wyden for having the tenacity to see that this, at least, happened.
But as big a story as this is, perhaps an equally significant story is the way it is being misreported.
First, even though quotes of Obama and direct statements from Dianne Feinstein and Ron Wyden refer to memos, plural, people persist in reporting that there is one memo.
Second, in spite of the fact that Obama has only acceded to letting the two Intelligence Committees have access to the memos, most media outlets are reporting that “Congress” will get the memos. Congress consists of 535 people elected by citizens. The Intelligence Committees consist of 35 people selected by party leaders. Among those 35 are Michelle Bachmann and Lynn Westmoreland.
And while on the Senate side, non-Intelligence Committee Senators can usually arrange to see such classified materials, it at least used to be that on the House side Members had to ask politely. And even still, the most responsible reporters are saying terms of this kind of access is still to be determined.
Ah well. At least 35 men and women can know what might get you and I killed. But you and I aren’t allowed to know yet.