Sunday, June 30, 2013


OK. Let me just say that it’s – I want to thank everyone for, I think, a very, very fascinating and informative debate. We’ll be able to view the program again on the ABA website, which is


If you’d like to receive future notices of programs such as this one, please send your email address to the contact link on our website.

I want to call your attention to three books that we have that are on – for sale. The first is the – “National Security Law in the News,” which I highly recommend, which goes through many, many areas of the national security law and how journalism interact. A number of people on the panel have written actually chapters and it’s extremely informative.

We have another book, called “Patriots Debate,” which looks at contemporary issues in national security, and then “National Security Law: Fifty Years of Transformation.” I think Jill Rhodes is in the audience, and she – it’s another book that sort of lays out the big issues.

But I think – I’m going to just quote from the Constitution. I think there’s a tension, and the tension is there, and I – that’s why I think we’re going to continue to have more debates about this area, because the Newseum is famous for the – protecting the First Amendment and, they like to say, the five freedoms. I could call on someone to ask them what the five freedoms of the First Amendment are, but we all know it’d be slightly embarrassing. So I’ll just read what the five freedoms are of the First Amendment.

MR. POLICINSKI: Bless you.

MR. RISHIKOF: They are “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people preferably – peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

But the tension is Article 1, Section 5. Article 1, Section 5, is very rarely read, but it’s ready by people who are in the intelligence business and the Congress. Article 1, Section 5, says, “Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such parts as may in their judgment require secrecy” – secrecy’s actually mentioned in the Constitution, and privacy is not – “and the yeas and nays of the members of either house on any question shall, at the desire of one fifth of those present, be entered on the journal.”

The Congress is really the focus of understanding where secrecy should be. The executive branch has its perspective, and the judiciary has its, but the Congress is really, I think, where the center of gravity is.

And what I hope that – is that you enjoyed this particular event, and I’m looking forward to more ABA Newseum events in which we actually explore these issues in such a mature, thoughtful way. I think we had more light than heat, which is what really one focuses for. And I again want to thank the Newseum, Medill, and the McCormick Foundation for supporting this, and I particularly would like you to join me in thanking our panelists, who I think were extremely enlightening and helpful this afternoon. (Applause.)

So that ends the proceedings, and I look forward to seeing some of you later. But I want to thank you again for taking time and doing this.

Jewish Journalists
Andrea Mitchell
Andrea Mitchell (born October 30, 1946) is an American television journalist, anchor, reporter, and commentator for NBC News based in Washington, D.C.. She is the NBC News Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent, and has recently reported on the 2008 Race for the White House for NBC News broadcasts, including NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, Today, and MSNBC. She anchors Andrea Mitchell Reports airing at 1pm–2pm ET weekdays on MSNBC, has appeared on and guest hosted Meet the Press, and is often a guest on Hardball with Chris Matthews and The Rachel Maddow Show.

Early life

Mitchell graduated with a B.A. in English literature from the University of Pennsylvania in 1967, where she served as news director of student radio station WXPN. She stayed in Philadelphia after graduation, hired as a reporter at KYW radio. Mitchell rose to prominence as the station's City Hall correspondent, and also reported for sister station KYW-TV. She moved to CBS affiliate WTOP in Washington, D.C., in 1976. Two years later, Mitchell moved to NBC's network news operation, where she served as a general correspondent. In 1979, she was named the NBC News energy correspondent and reported on the late 1970s energy crisis and the Three Mile Island nuclear accident. Mitchell also covered the White House from 1981 until becoming chief congressional correspondent in 1988.

NBC News and MSNBC

She has been the Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent for NBC News since November 1994.[citation needed] Previously, she had served as Chief White House Correspondent (1993–1994) and Chief Congressional Correspondent (1988–1992) for NBC News.
In 2005, Mitchell published a book entitled Talking Back... to Presidents, Dictators, and Assorted Scoundrels (ISBN 0143038737), chronicling her work as a journalist.
Mitchell hosts a program on MSNBC entitled Andrea Mitchell Reports. It broadcasts weekdays from 1 PM ET/10 AM PT.


Role in the Plame Affair

A report in The Washington Post ("Bush Administration Is Focus of Inquiry CIA Agent's Identity Was Leaked to Media" by Mike Allen and Dana Priest, Washington Post, September 28, 2003) that Mitchell was leaked Valerie Plame's identity led to her being questioned by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. While Mitchell never appeared before the investigating grand jury or in I. Lewis Libby's trial, she was on the subpoena list as a person of interest. In October 2003, on "Capitol Report," Mitchell made a statement which Libby's defense construed to mean it was widely known among journalists that Joe Wilson's wife was in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), a position she later clarified.[1]
MURRAY: And the second question is: Do we have any idea how widely known it was in Washington that Joe Wilson's wife worked for the CIA?
MITCHELL: It was widely known amongst those of us who cover the intelligence community and who were actively engaged in trying to track down who among the foreign service community was the envoy to Niger. But frankly I wasn't aware of her actual role at the CIA and the fact that she had a covert role involving weapons of mass destruction, not until Bob Novak wrote it.

McCain's "cone of silence"

Following a forum at the Saddleback Church in August 2008 on values and ethics conducted by Christian pastor and author Rick Warren between the presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, Mitchell reported that the Obama campaign accused McCain of overhearing the questions asked of Obama, when McCain was supposed to be in a secluded "cone of silence."
According to the New York Times, Warren assured the audience that “we have safely placed Senator McCain in a cone of silence” and that he could not hear the questions. However, McCain was not in the building at the time; he was still in transit, without supervision by the forum staff.[2] According to CNN, Warren said "we flat out asked him" if he heard any of the questions. The McCain campaign asserted "that McCain did not hear or see any of the broadcast" in the motorcade or after he arrived.[3] The accusation provoked the McCain campaign into writing a letter to NBC News, complaining of biased news coverage.[4] The dispute expanded, including reports on other networks such as CBS noting that there were allegations McCain had access to "communications devices" which may have advised him of the questions even if he was not listening directly to the broadcast itself.[5]

Controversy during Obama Campaign

During an appearance on MSNBC on June 5, 2008, Mitchell came under fire when she referred to the voters of the southwest Virginia region as rednecks.[6] On June 9, Mitchell apologized for her comment stating:
And now, a point of personal privilege. I owe an apology to the good people of Bristol, Virginia, for something stupid that I said last week. I was trying to explain, based on reporting from Democratic strategists, why Barack Obama was campaigning in southwest Virginia, but without attribution or explanation, I used a term strategists often use to demean an entire community. No excuses, I'm really sorry. As they say, when I make a mistake, it's a beaut.[7]

Iowa Caucus Controversy

Mitchell came under criticism for a comment made during an interview of Republican strategist Mike Murphy in a January 1, 2012 news segment on Nightly News with Brian Williams. Mitchell said, "The rap on Iowa: it doesn't represent the rest of the country – too white, too evangelical, too rural." NBC defended the comment stating, "she was referencing critics who argue that the state shouldn't carry so much weight because it doesn't proportionally represent the rest of the country." [8]

Personal life

Mitchell was born in New York City. She married her second husband, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, twenty years her senior, in 1997 following a lengthy relationship. [9] Previously, she was married to Gil Jackson; that marriage ended in divorce in the mid-1970s. At the end of her show on September 7, 2011, Mitchell revealed that she was diagnosed with breast cancer during a doctor's visit a few weeks earlier. It was caught early and treated.[10]

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