James Wolfe and the New York Times reporter Ali Watkins.
The indictment of the Senate intelligence committee officials in a leak investigation, except to have a blip — that the justice Department seized the phone and E-Mail records of his Ex-girlfriend.
And as we quickly learned, the woman, Ali Watkins covered the very Committee where James Wolfe, the Director of security.
Watkins is still on the reporting staff of The New York Times, in which the management checks your work history. And that makes it all the more remarkable that the paper just to hand in An exposé with new revelations published a page about the 26-year-old journalist.
As the Times puts it, “a three-year affair between a young reporter and government officials with access to top-secret information,” “now part of a Federal investigation that shook the world of Washington journalists and the sources they rely on …
“If the romance with Mr. Wolfe raised red flags, they were not enough to prevent several news organizations by the appointment of Mrs. Watkins, or to persuade her editors to move her from the intelligence beat.”
Before the times hired her in December, Watkins — in a meteoric rise-reported on the Intelligence Committee for Politico, BuzzFeed, the Huffington Post and the McClatchy Newspapers.
To the new findings:
– While Watkins has claimed (they would not speak on the record, your own paper), you don’t use Wolfe as a source, they “would, make a mental note of tidbits, he mentioned casually, or gossip with him about Capitol Hill, or throw a fact of teaching, and his answers.”
–In 2014, when Watkins was a senior in college and an internship at McClatchy), the 50-sent something Wolfe you a pearl bracelet as a graduation gift.
–When Watkins said, an editor at the HuffPost about their romance, “editors have decided that you to cover with your intelligence, because Mrs. Watkins said she was with Mr. Wolfe as a source.”
– During your job interview with BuzzFeed, Watkins, an editor said, ” that you are a man who has the intelligence to work on Capitol Hill. You said he was the source, but not voluntarily, Mr. Wolfe is the name or title, and the discussion went no further.”
–As he Politically last year, Watkins said the editor, ” that you are a man, in the intelligence community, although they are not voluntary, Mr. Wolfe’s name or his position. A spokesman for the Politically, Brad Dayspring, said that they ” will not the personal nature of their relationship early on in their term of office.'”
–According to Watkins and Wolfe broke, she began to “from another member of staff from the Committee. You said that you had been informed, a Political editor of the non-object. But Mr. Dayspring, the Political spokesman, said: “Politically, the editors were not aware of this relationship.'”
–Wolfe, in the meantime,” another young reporter covering the Intelligence Committee, some valuable information, and then sent her a series of personal night-time texts.” But the woman resisted his overtures.
–If the DOJ Watkins said in February, it seized had their records, you have not inform, the times found out, months later, on the eve of Wolfe’s arrest. A spokeswoman said the paper “would be obviously know rather have been.”
And, in Watkins’ mysterious meeting with a customs agent, whose real name is Rambo, seemed to threaten to not put their relationship with the Wolfe, if you help him.
Note that on the day that Watkins broke the story about the former trump campaign consultant Carter page has been under investigation over its Russia relations, Watkins and Wolfe exchanged 124, electronic messages, voice for seven minutes, after the story was published, and a further 15 minutes after their appearance with Rachel Maddow. He also said he was glad he could help you with your career.
Many supporters of the freedom of the press wanted them to embrace, the in the case of Watkins, who is the first well-known journalist in the sights of Trump-management in a leak probe. The Obama administration ramped up such surveillance against reporters, and Jeff Sessions says he has investigations has tripled, the number of the leak.
But the disorder Ali Watkins’ romance with a man whose Committee has you covered intensively polluted the water, to the point that the support for her is muted at best.
I can’t have it better than the times:
“The relationship has to concern in many editorial offices, that Ms. Watkins behavior, the journalists, and particularly women, vulnerable to unfounded accusations of exchanging sex for information.”
And we know now, she was less than forthcoming, along with some of their employers.
The times, which deserves credit for an aggressive investigation, now a tough decision on his hands.
Howard Kurtz is a Fox News analyst and host of “MediaBuzz” (Sundays 11 p.m.). He is the author of “media madness: Donald Trump, the press, and The war for the truth.” You can follow him at @Howard Kurtz. Click here for more information on Howard Kurtz.