Thomas Barton, Investigative reporter
Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen say the Feds gave them access to the Blagojevich wiretap tapes and transcripts they used in writing their book entitled “Golden.”
This access was granted to them when the material was under seal and unavailable to anyone else, in or out of the media.
IP2P has learned that Coen has made another claim – one that takes the cozy relationship between the Tribune and the Feds to a whole new level. Remember, the Feds initially leaked information to the Tribune about the existence of the Fed’s wiretap on Blago.
When asked about the sealed Blagojevich tapes and transcripts that the Feds shared with the two reporters for their book, Coen replied that the leaked material was “the Tribune's business.” He refused to elaborate.
In other words, talk to my boss. So we’ve talked to Coen’s boss.
Tribune Editor Gerould Kern was asked why the Trib has failed to share the tapes and transcripts with its readers.
Kern will not respond.
We call upon the Chicago Tribune to inform its readers and publish the transcripts. After all, they represent news, and the paper is supposed to be in the news business.
There is no legal ban on printing the material. Chase and Coen have already referred to tapes in their book. But there they only quoted material from inane conversations with little news value to Chicagoans.
In other words, they teased their readers, but didn’t inform them.
So to Gerould Kern we say: Tear down this wall that hides the Blagojevich tapes.