In August 2017 Attorney General Mr. Sessions condemned the “dramatic increase in the number of unauthorized disclosures of classified national security information in recent months”.
Under the Obama administration, the Justice Department also aggressively prosecuted officials who provided sensitive information to reporters. In 2013, prosecutors obtained the phone recordings from reporters and editors from The Associated Press. In this case, law enforcement officers obtained the records for more than 20 phone lines from their offices and journalists, including their home and cell phone numbers.
In addition, the Justice Department confiscated the phone records of James Rosen, then a Fox News reporter, after one of his articles contained details of a secret United States report on North Korea. In an affidavit, Mr. Rosen was described as “at least as a helper, advocate and / or co-conspirator”.
The Justice Department’s decision to search the phone records was widely condemned in the news media.
In 2013, then Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. issued new guidelines that severely restricted the circumstances in which journalists’ records could be accessed, but did not prevent prosecutors from keeping phone records and emails for national security reasons to search.
In an email from July 2017, Sarah Isgur Flores, then a top Justice Department spokeswoman, tried to cast doubt that a meeting between Mr Kislyak and Mr Sessions had even taken place. you described the section as “exposed” and challenged his credibility when she defended Mr. Sessions on the news media.
Ms. Isgur described the coverage as “serious leaks for our national security”. The email was received from reporter Jason Leopold of BuzzFeed News under the Freedom of Information Act.
Last year the Trump administration released confidential transcripts from Mr. Kislyak speaking with Mr. Trump’s former National Security Advisor Michael T. Flynn. The documents also revealed very sensitive F.B.I. This shows that the office was able to monitor the phone line at the Russian Embassy in Washington even before a call from Mr. Kislyak connected to Mr. Flynn’s voicemail.