March 23rd, 2008
01:37 PM ET
10 years ago

Specter: Passport leaks call for criminal investigation

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Two days after Barack Obama called for the administration and Congress to investigate the breach of the presidential candidates’ passport data, the Senate Judiciary Committee’s senior Republican said he agreed with the Illinois senator.

“There are federal criminal statutes involved. I think that ought to be a very intense investigation. I think privacy is a very fundamental matter,” Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter told Gloria Borger on CNN’s Late Edition Sunday. "I think it ought to be something for Attorney General Mukasey, and I think that it may well be something for the Senate Judiciary Committee, where I’m the ranking member."

Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon agreed with Specter, adding that the Government Accountability Office had been warning about this problem for a decade, and that the White House deserved a share of the blame for fostering a “a culture of disregard for privacy.”

Thursday night, the State Department confirmed that Obama’s passport file had been improperly accessed three times this year. On Friday, they revealed that the passport files of the rest of the presidential field – Sens. Hillary Clinton and John McCain – had been similarly breached.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Friday publicly apologized for the actions of the three contract employees, and said the State Department inspector general would investigate the matter. State Department officials also briefed Senate staffers for the three candidates and for Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Joseph Biden of Delaware.

–CNN's Jessica Rummel

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. Grif

    The Names Bond! James Bond!!!

    March 23, 2008 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  2. Proud American

    Lets get this investigation underway ASAP. No matter how hard they try to divert things it will most likely lead back to Bush's administration.

    March 23, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  3. lugina


    March 23, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  4. Belle

    BLOOD is the same color...and men and women in uniform are DYING for all Americans...not just "white" or "black" Americans.

    March 23, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  5. isaac

    lets stop talking bout what we cant change and focus on what we can change .."we cannot change the color of skin nor can we change those who dn't want to be changed but we can be the generation of change who changes the color of the future for tommrows generation" go barakobama08

    March 23, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  6. Darryl, Arlington TX Delegate

    This is just how life is we must ensure that personal security are adhere to at all levels of government.

    Regardless of the person America security is very important.

    God Bless America.

    March 23, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  7. Fred

    Yeah the crimes that Bush committed never get looked in to. I will bet this dont go far either.

    March 23, 2008 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  8. Ardnuas

    Yes, let's find out the this doesn't happen to anyone else.

    March 23, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |