On Monday, the New York Times confirmed that in December 2005, its Washington bureau chief, Philip Taubman, “met with a group of Congressional leaders familiar with the eavesdropping program, including Ms. Harman. They all argued that The Times should not publish” its story on the National Security Agency’s wiretapping. So who are those other “Congressional leaders”? CQ’s David Nather tries to narrow down the possibilities:
But during the period before the NSA program became public, the members of the Gang of Eight would have included House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill.; Nancy Pelosi, initially the ranking Democrat on the House intelligence committee, and later the House minority leader; Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn.; Tom Daschle, D-S.D., and later Harry Reid, D-Nev., the Senate minority leaders at the time; Senate Intelligence Chairman Pat Roberts, R-Kan.; John D. Rockefeller IV, D-W.Va., the ranking Democrat on Senate Intelligence; House Intelligence Chairman Peter Hoekstra, R-Mich.; and Harman, who replaced Pelosi as the ranking Democrat on House Intelligence after Pelosi became minority leader.
A “Democratic aide” told CQ that Pelosi wasn’t at the NYT meeting. Nather adds that GOP members of the Gang of Eight “would have had more incentive to try to kill the story, since most GOP lawmakers later said the Times jeopardized national security by running the story.”