As many as 20 journalists investigated by secretive CBP division

December 11, 2021
As many as 20 journalists were investigated by a secretive U.S. Customs and Border Protection division beginning in 2017, according to a December 2021 report by Yahoo News.The division, known as the Counter Network Division, would identify and vet individuals, including journalists, by pulling their email addresses, phone numbers and photos from their passport applications and running the information through multiple government databases.Journalists known to have been investigated by the division include then-Politico reporter Ali Watkins, Associated Press reporter Martha …

Missouri governor labels reporter a hacker, threatens criminal prosecution

October 13, 2021
Missouri Gov. Mike Parson and Education Commissioner Margie Vandeven accused St. Louis Post-Dispatch journalist Josh Renaud of “hacking” a state website on Oct. 13, 2021, after Renaud reported a flaw in the website that exposed educators’ Social Security numbers. The following day, Parson announced an investigation into the alleged hacking and said the state would pursue criminal prosecution and a civil lawsuit against Renaud and the newspaper, the Post-Dispatch reported.Renaud discovered the vulnerability on a website maintained by the state’s …

Twitter account of Fla. governor’s press secretary suspended for ‘abusive behavior’ against an AP reporter

August 20, 2021
Twitter temporarily suspended the account of Christina Pushaw, press secretary to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, on Aug. 20, 2021, for violating rules on abusive behavior after a series of her tweets incited harassment and online violence against an Associated Press reporter, according to the outlet.Florida-based AP reporter Brendan Farrington published a story on Aug. 17, noting that a major funder of the DeSantis campaign invests in Regeneron, a COVID-19 treatment drug that DeSantis has promoted in Florida.According to the AP …

Florida county commission passes resolution sarcastically ‘honoring’ journalist who wrote critically of it

February 9, 2021
On Feb. 9, 2021, the Brevard County Commission in Florida passed a resolution sarcastically “honoring” journalist Isadora Rangel, who had written critically of the commission.Rangel had recently announced that she would be leaving her post as the opinion and engagement editor of Florida Today, the major daily covering Brevard County, for a job at the Miami Herald.In a video of the commission’s Feb. 9 meeting posted by the Washington Post, Commissioner John Tobia can be seen reading the resolution aloud.Among …

Reporter for The Advocate, The Times-Picayune sued by Louisiana attorney general over public records request

February 5, 2021
Andrea Gallo, a Louisiana-based reporter for The Advocate and The Times-Picayune newspaper, was sued by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry on Feb. 5, 2021, in an effort to block a public records request made by Gallo.Landry’s lawsuit asked a judge to back up the attorney general’s denial of a request that Gallo had filed Dec. 14, 2020, asking to see a sexual harassment complaint against a high-ranking official in Landry’s office.Gallo was initially told that the records would be available …

White House deputy press secretary resigns after threatening Politico reporter

January 20, 2021
According to Vanity Fair, deputy White House press secretary TJ Ducklo threatened and verbally harassed Politico reporter Tara Palmeri on Jan. 20, 2021, in an attempt to quash a story about his relationship with political reporter Alexi McCammond, then of Axios.Palmeri, Politico and the White House did not respond to the Tracker’s requests for comment.On Jan. 21, Playbook, Politico’s daily newsletter, of which Palmeri is a co-author, included an item headlined “BIDEN SETS STANDARD FOR PROFESSIONAL BEHAVIOR” and a quote …
More Incidents