The top line news from an interview Attorney General Eric Holder gave to The Washington Post is that Holder recognizes Glenn Greenwald's work in exposing NSA — and Justice Department — surveillance as journalism and that he wouldn't be prosecuted. More important, is that Holder also supports reviewing past cases to inform defendants when evidence against them stemmed from that surveillance. That information could kick open the door to a Supreme Court challenge of the NSA's activity.
Given Holder's personal history with the media (remember the AP phone records collection?), it's understandable that his comments about Greenwald would get some attention.
“Unless information that has not come to my attention is presented to me, what I have indicated in my testimony before Congress is that any journalist who’s engaged in true journalistic activities is not going to be prosecuted by this Justice Department,” Holder said.
“I certainly don’t agree with what Greenwald has done,” Holder continued, but journalism — even journalism flavored with activism — is not a reason to consider criminal charges. On Friday morning, The New York Times published an editorial raising concerns about how the British government is treading on that country's freedom of the press. Holder's statement distances him from that danger — but unlike his British peers, Holder is constrained by the First Amendment.