The Guardian’s explosive report that the National Security Agency has supposedly been collecting Verizon phone data from United States citizens has sent shock-waves throughout the media. On MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” hosts and guests, alike, were dismayed by the supposed revelations.
“It’s just one more story that has come out that I think, again, hurts the Obama administration by feeding into this belief that this government is too big, too massive,” said host Joe Scarborough. “It plays right into the hands of the president’s political opponents.”
Former GOP strategist Nicolle Wallace also chimed in, noting that the allegation, if substantiated, speaks volumes about President Barack Obama’s image and standing.
“It renders completely ludicrous the notion that Barack Obama ran as the anti-George W. Bush, because he has now accelerated and intensified almost every single anti-terror policy that was ever imaged by the Bush administration,” she said, later, again, adding, “The notion that this man ran as the anti-Bush is now rendered completely ridiculous.”
Watch the discussion, below:
This morning, a senior White House official declined to substantiate the Guardian report, but defended the method of collecting U.S. citizens’ phone information. As TheBlaze and the AP reported, the official spoke on condition of anonymity. The official called the method, “a critical tool in protecting the nation from terrorist threats.”
“On its face, the order reprinted in the article does not allow the government to listen in on anyone’s telephone calls,” the official said, according to Politico. “The information acquired does not include the content of any communications or the name of any subscriber. It relates exclusively to metadata, such as a telephone number or the length of a call.”
As TheBlaze’s Jason Howerton reported last night, “The alleged order, reportedly issued in April, demands that Verizon give the NSA information on all telephone calls in its systems on an ‘ongoing, daily basis’ over a three month period. This includes calls made both within the U.S. and between the U.S. to other countries.”
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