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Obama targeting leakers?

This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," May 14, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated

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O'REILLY: "Factor Follow-up Segment" tonight, the Obama

administration has indicted six federal employees for leaking classified

information, that's more than any other administration. What exactly is

going on?

Joining us from Washington Mark Zaid, an attorney who often represents

federal employees, who get caught up in this kind of stuff. So we have a

lot of covert operations around the world in the war on terror. And if the

press finds out about them people could die. I think we all know that.

And so is the Obama administration doing anything wrong here by upping

the prosecutions of the leakers?

MARK ZAID, NATIONAL SECURITY ATTORNEY: No. Not necessarily. I mean

leaks need to be prosecuted as you said my clients are often covert

intelligence officers, military members and a leak could actually cause

them harm could lead to their death.

O'REILLY: Yes.

ZAID: What's -- what's different since the Clinton administration and

the Bush administration both of which deplored leaks and wanted to go after

in fact many of these cases started in the investigative phase in the Bush

administration. What's changed is the evidence. This administration has

had access to the evidence mostly electronic -- e-mails, phone records like

with the AP, the recent AP issuance of a subpoena. And they have been able

to prosecute going forward.

O'REILLY: We're at the --

ZAID: Go ahead.

O'REILLY: -- you are saying that the high tech apparatus the Justice

Department now has enables them to ferret out these leakers a lot easier

than had been in the past.

ZAID: Than ever before.

O'REILLY: Ok.

ZAID: It's no longer the days of Woodward Bernstein meeting deep

throat at 2:00 o'clock in the morning in the parking garage.

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY: And you know what's interesting about that we had a guy who

working at Fox News recently convicted of a crime by taking information

from Fox News and giving it to Fox haters. And they tracked this guy down

like that because our security people here are very, very tech savvy. So

that's an interesting thing.

ZAID: Sure.

O'REILLY: All right.

ZAID: Well people think for example they'll use encrypted e-mail

which even perhaps the NSA can't break. Well that's not good when the

United States takes a subpoena, goes to the Internet provider and grabs all

the e-mails and hard copy.

O'REILLY: Right. It's hard to get around. So that's what's

happening. Now, the story breaks, 20 phone lines and again, they weren't

tapped.

ZAID: Right.

O'REILLY: All right. It wasn't like the feds were tapping these guys

they wanted to see who they were calling on 20 different lines so that they

could match it with -- is there anybody working in a classified capacity

that these Associated Press reporters are talking to? And therefore, if

there were, we'll pick those people up, right? That's what it was about.

ZAID: Right to at least show there was a communication between the

two. Obviously they won't know the contents --

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY: Right.

ZAID: -- but perhaps they might have interviewed people who said I

did not speak with them.

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY: -- NSA or the CIA or any other Intel agency and they have

got six call sheets for an AP reporter.

ZAID: Right.

O'REILLY: The FBI is going to go in and talk to them.

ZAID: Exactly.

O'REILLY: Now all of this makes sense. But the Associated Press is

saying "Listen, that was way too much. I mean, you went in on a fishing

expedition and now you have got people involved. You are checking people

out." That's invasion of their privacy and this is what you can't do in a

free society. How do you answer that?

ZAID: Well, they may be right. We don't know because we don't know

yet the scope of what the investigation is actually about.

O'REILLY: But neither does Holder. He doesn't know either.

ZAID: Right because he accused himself.

O'REILLY: And other guy who is in charge won't tell us.

ZAID: Right.

O'REILLY: I don't like that. Do you like that?

ZAID: No well, no. I mean, but there are guidelines that are being -

- presumably being followed.

O'REILLY: How do we know if nobody will tell us what they did?

ZAID: We'll know -- we'll know at some point. The problem with this,

Bill, is that this administration, coming in on its grounds of transparency

and wanting to be the presidency that would protect national security, in

particular whistleblowers, has done little to nothing to do so. People

don't wake up one morning and say "I'm going to become a whistle blower or

a leaker" and leak classified information.

O'REILLY: And Hicks got hammered when Hicks the second in command in

Libya started criticizing the security. They got pounded.

ZAID: Yes there is no mechanism for these people to come forward and

tell people internally to the government I'm concerned about something.

And what will you do about it?

(CROSSTALK)

O'REILLY: Right, there is abuse of power, right. All right, well,

we've got to strengthen those laws. Counsel thanks very much.

ZAID: Absolutely.

O'REILLY: A very interesting segment.

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