Unless you think that the chief legal counsel for one of the largest media conglomerates in the world is an incompetent boob, the Department of Justice is lying about notifying News Corporation, parent company of Fox News, about the James Rosen subpoena that allowed DoJ to seize the reporter's comminications.
New York Times:
A Fox News executive said the channel had never heard of the Justice Department investigation and had no knowledge of New Corporation ever being notified. A News Corporation spokesman said Sunday that the company was looking into the matter of notification. "While we don't take issue with the D.O.J.'s account that they sent a notice to News Corp., we do not have a record of ever having received it," Nathaniel Brown, the spokesman, said.
Last week, The Washington Post obtained an affidavit that described Mr. Rosen (without naming him) as "at the very least, either as an aider, abettor and/or co-conspirator." The investigation relates to a 2009 article Mr. Rosen published on FoxNews.com that quoted a source describing missile activity in North Korea.
In e-mail to employees on Thursday, Roger Ailes, chairman and chief executive of Fox News, rejected the validity of the investigation. "We will not allow a climate of press intimidation, unseen since the McCarthy era, to frighten any of us away from the truth," Mr. Ailes said.
Lawrence A. Jacobs, who was News Corporation's chief legal officer until he left in June 2011, said he never saw a notification about the phone records.
"I would have remembered getting a fax from the Justice Department," Mr. Jacobs said in an interview Sunday. "These are not the kinds of things that happen every day."
He added, "The first thing I would've done would be to call Roger Ailes."
News Corporation said it had conducted a thorough search of its legal records, including, Mr. Jacobs said, a scan of his e-mails and other relevant materials, and has found nothing related to the investigation. "The inference that I sat on this and didn't share it with Roger couldn't be further from the truth," Mr. Jacobs said.
Eric Holder personally signed off on the Rosen investigation (after swearing to Congress he had nothing to do with either the AP or Rosen cases) so the question of notification takes on a whole new meaning. In the pre-election environment, DoJ lawyers bamboozeld a judge into keeping the indictment of Rosen quiet by telling him that Rosen was a flight risk. Perhaps they "forgot" to notify Fox News of the subpoena also. More likely, they will claim some technical snafu is at fault ("The dog ate our email.")
Senator Tom Coburn said yesterday on Face the Nation that "You can't investigate yourself," referring to Holder being charge of looking into the AP scandal. Given this new information, it may be the only way to keep a lid on further lawbreaking by DoJ coming to light.