House Republicans have opened a perjury inquiry, arguing that Holder’s statement doesn’t square with the department’s labeling of Fox News reporter James Rosen as a potential “co-conspirator” in court documents used to monitor Rosen.
“I do not agree that characterizations establishing probable cause for a search warrant for materials from a member of the news media during an ongoing investigation constitute an intent to prosecute that member of the news media,” Holder wrote. “I do believe that a thorough investigation of the disclosure of classified information that threatened national security was necessary and appropriate.”
He added: “As explained in our prior letters, the government’s decision to seek this search warrant was an investigative step, and at no time during this matter have prosecutors sought approval from me to bring criminal charges against the reporter.”
Holder said at a May hearing that he was not aware of any potential criminal cases being brought against journalists.