NEW YORK – When CNN preceded an interview with legal activist Larry Klayman last night with an unflattering profile and then removed him from the screen when the dialogue got heated, powers much higher than the cable news network were wielding influence, charges Klayman.
“What CNN did to me yesterday was a hit piece orchestrated against me by the Obama White House with the direct involvement of the Democratic National Committee in an attempt to discredit me and to turn the public against Judge Leon’s court decision that the NSA is violating Fourth Amendment rights,” Klayman told WND in a telephone interview.
“This was a Clinton thing as much as it was an Obama thing,” he said.
Klayman won a landmark restraining order Monday against the National Security Agency's telephone surveillance. He alleged in a WND interview that after he filed the case that he was put under surveillance by the NSA. In an interview yesterday following the decision, he told WND the misdeeds of Richard Nixon, who resigned in disgrace, pale in comparison to the misdeeds of President Obama, who "has broken into the homes of 300 million Americans.”
Klayman has praised the courage of Judge Richard Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, who ruled Monday that the NSA's regular collection of virtually all phone records is almost certainly unconstitutional.
His case, on behalf of a Verizon Wireless customer, was launched after the extent of government spying on Americans was unveiled by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, who said the court's decision made him feel justified in releasing classified documents. Named in the case are the NSA, Department of Justice and several U.S. officials, including President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder.
The complaint alleges the government, with the participation of private telephone companies, has been conducting "a secret and illegal government scheme to intercept and analyze vast quantities of domestic telephonic communications."
Last night, Klayman's appearance on CNN with host Don Lemon and legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin was preceded by a profile that quoted a former George W. Bush staffer saying Klayman's lawsuits were about “fighting for himself and his own, in my opinion, delusions of grandeur."
Klayman opened the conversation accusing Lemon of being a "big supporter of Obama," charging "you have favored him in every respect."
"You have to try to do a hit piece to diminish a very important decision," Klayman said.
The attorney told WND Wednesday he believes the DNC "used Lemon as a shill."
"Obama and the Clintons know this was a key decision, and they don’t want us to have any oxygen," he said. "The DNC wants to cut me down to size."
He said what the Obama administration has done with the NSA "is perhaps the worst violation of constitutional rights in America history.”
Klayman compared Lemon's decision to remove him from the screen in the middle of an interview to former MSNBC host Martin Bashir's slur of Gov. Sarah Palin, which got Bashir fired.
“What Lemon did was classless and sleazy,” Klayman said.
“Lemon is a well-known ultra-leftist African-American political activist who pursues a LGBT sexual agenda,” he said.
Klayman asserted CNN should fire Lemon, just as MSNBC fired Bashir.
"The entire segment with me yesterday was structured as a hit piece, designed to bring in CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin whose job was to call me a lunatic even though he appeared not to have read Judge Leon’s decision," Klayman said.
Klayman objected to the Obama administration’s claim that the NSA only collects “metadata” on U.S. telephone conversations and does not record the identity of the parties on the call or listen to the content of the call.
“The NSA is listening to us right now,” Klayman charged. “The Obama administration is lying about the extent to which the NSA monitors on a continuous basis the ongoing telephone conversations of countless numbers of Americans.”
Klayman said he was considering filing a defamation lawsuit against CNN, alleging the network had conspired to ruin his reputation with an interview set up to ambush him on air and marginalize him and his ongoing litigation against the NSA.