Under Jeff Sessions, the Justice Department is cracking down on leakers

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions speaks during his interview with The Associated Press at the National Police Headquarters in San Salvador El Salvador. Sessions addressed the National Organization of Black Law E

Message received? Two weeks after Donald Trump began publicly lambasting his Attorney General for a lack of focus on executive branch leaks (among other things), Jeff Sessions announced a new effort to plug the holes.

Mr Sessions said the Trump administration is determined to tackle "the staggering number of leaks undermining the ability of our government to protect this country".

Sessions said that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had beefed up staff devoted to investigating leaks, and that those caught in his crackdown would be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Sessions' announcement certainly didn't sit well with NBC's Chuck Todd, who said on Twitter that he would ignore the subpoena if the new policy goes into effect.

Sessions was accompanied by Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and National Counterintelligence and Security Center Director William Evanina. Namely, his acknowledgment that, amid an ongoing attempt to discover and thwart leakers in the Trump administration, he's now assessing the Department of Justice's policies for issuing subpoenas to journalists. "No government can be effective when its leader cannot discuss sensitive matters in confidence or to talk freely in confidence with foreign leaders".

His Justice Department announcement comes amid news reports involving the Trump campaign and White House that relied on classified information.

"We respect the important role that the press plays and will give them respect, but it is not unlimited", Sessions said in prepared remarks. They can not place lives at risk.

To members of the intelligence community who may be considering an unauthorized leak, Coats said, "Anyone who engages in these criminal acts is betraying the intelligence community and the American people".

"We must balance the press' role with protecting our national security with the lives of those who serve in the intelligence community, the armed forces, and all law-abiding Americans", Sessions said.

Maxine Waters hits Trump over comments to police
I think he is doing our nation a disservice by encouraging police departments to engage in unlawful, unconstitutional behaviour. Trump's visit to his home state of NY came as Sessions was in El Salvador to increase global cooperation against the gang.

The attorney general said four people are already being prosecuted to allegedly leaking, though he did not provide any details. "The Department of Justice is open for business and I have, this morning, this warning: Don't do it".

"Understand this, if you improperly disclose classified information, we will find you, we will investigate you, and we will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law, and you will not be happy with the result".

Anger in the White House about leaks has been growing of late.

He said there had been a "dramatic" increase in recent months of unauthorised disclosures to the media and even foreign adversaries.

"No one is entitled to surreptitiously fight their battles in the media by revealing sensitive government information", he said.

The Washington Post on Thursday published transcripts of his conversations with the leaders of Mexico and Australia.

The Trump administration would hardly be the first to crack down on leakers.

Comey later testified that he orchestrated the leaks to ensure that a special investigator was put in charge of the Russian Federation investigation.

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