POLITICS

Mark Sanford: DOJ's AP Probe Is 'Part Of A Larger Pattern' Of Presidency 'Overstepping Bounds'

May 17, 2013 | Updated May 17, 2013

One day after being sworn in to his new role in Congress, Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), waded right into one of the White House's largest problems.

Sanford appeared on Thursday's edition of CNN's "Piers Morgan Live," diving into Monday's revelation that the Justice Department secretly probed Associated Press journalists' phone records. The former governor chalked off the controversy as a product of misplaced presidential power.

"This is part of a larger pattern that I do think obviously disturbs conservatives and I think it ought to disturb every American regardless of one's political stripe or flavor," Sanford said. "And that is the power within the Executive Branch, within the administration, of overstepping bounds."

Sanford added that the AP probe is "completely out of bounds with what you've seen in the past," fitting with the above notion.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney delivered a message to the contrary on the same "Piers Morgan Live" broadcast, vowing that his two decades of experience as a journalist have bred nothing but commitment to a free press.

"I very strongly believe, as does the president, in the need for the press to be able to pursue investigative journalism freely," Carney said. "I strongly believe, as does the president, in the First Amendment, and the Freedom of Speech, and the Freedom of the Press. These are core values of our democracy."

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