(Western Journal) Democrats have high regard for journalism and the sacredness of confidential sources, but only until the news cuts against their agenda.
When former President Donald Trump went after the fake news media that told lies and smeared him, they called any criticism of the press a threat to democracy.
But now, Democrats are A-OK with browbeating journalists to get them to give up confidential sources.
How times have changed.
This was most evident when Texas Democratic Rep. Sylvia Garcia and journalist Matt Taibbi got into a contentious exchange during the House Judiciary Committee’s “Hearing on Twitter Documents About Content Moderation Decisions” Thursday, Fox News reported.
The so-called “Twitter Files” Taibbi had a hand in reporting on came chock-full of revelations of how the government pulled the strings of their Big Tech puppets to manipulate messaging about Trump, COVID-19, Russia collusion and more.
However, the massive implications of such flagrant government interference meant less to Garcia than finding out who it may have been that gave him access to Twitter’s damning internal documents.
Garcia thought she might get the journalist to give up his sources by asking for a date when he first received the information, but Taibbi would not take the bait.
“I can’t give it to you, unfortunately, because this is a question of sourcing, and I’m a journalist, I don’t reveal my sources,” Taibbi said.
When she pushed further, Taibbi again shut her down.
“You earlier said that someone had sent you, through the internet, some message about whether or not you would be interested in some information,” Garcia stated.
“Yes, and I referred to that person as a source,” Taibbi replied.
“So you’re not going to tell us when Musk first approached you?” Garcia asked, attempting to get Taibbi to implicate Twitter owner and CEO Elon Musk as the culprit.
“Again, congresswoman, you’re asking a journalist to reveal a source,” Taibbi reiterated.
The exchange continued with Garcia leaning into her assertion that Musk was the source, apparently believing she had him cornered.
“You can’t have it both ways,” Garcia snapped at him.
“He can, he’s a journalist,” House Judiciary Committee chairman Rep. Jim Jordan rushed to Taibbi’s defense.
The Ohio Republican and Garcia continued to talk over one another, and Ranking Member Stacey Plaskett, a Democrat representing the U.S. Virgin Islands, got back into the fray, picking up an earlier thread with the same line of questioning.
“He’s not going to reveal his source, and the fact that Democrats are pressuring him to do that is such a violation of the First Amendment,” Jordan finally interjected over them.
Earlier in the hearing, Plaskett had attempted to badger both Taibbi and fellow journalist Michael Shellenberger into giving up their sources as well.
“The attribution for my story is sources at Twitter,” Taibbi would only say.
Shellenberger was a little more forthcoming on his contact with Musk, but not to the point of Plaskett’s satisfaction that the supervillain Tesla mogul was at the heart of the revelations.
Plaskett probed and prodded with leading questions about Musk’s involvement until Jordan shut down the line of questioning by pointing out the inappropriateness of it all.
Podcaster and conservative commentator Jack Posobiec shared that exchange with the caption, “BREAKING: Democrats Attempt to Force Taibbi to name his sources in open hearing. He REFUSES.”
BREAKING: Democrats Attempt to Force Taibbi to name his sources in open hearing. He REFUSES pic.twitter.com/pHLnT2UxYY
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) March 9, 2023