Rep. Jane Harman, a California Democrat long involved in intelligence issues, was overheard on a 2005 National Security Agency wiretap telling a suspected Israeli agent that she would lobby the Justice Department to reduce espionage-related charges against two former officials of the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee.
In return, the Israeli agent pledged to help lobby for Harman to become chairwoman of the House Intelligence Committee.
Now all of a sudden, Harman is "outraged" that she was caught on government wiretaps. Even though she was not the target at the time and approval for the wiretap was apparently legally obtained. But more important than that, Harman - A Democrat - had been a cheerleader for the Bush administrations domestic spying programs, including warrantless wiretapping.
Jane Harman, in the wake of the NSA scandal, became probably the most crucial defender of the Bush warrantless eavesdropping program, using her status as “the ranking Democratic on the House intelligence committee” to repeatedly praise the NSA program as “essential to U.S. national security” and “both necessary and legal.” She even went on Meet the Press to defend the program along with GOP Sen. Pat Roberts and Rep. Pete Hoekstra, and she even strongly suggested that the whistleblowers who exposed the lawbreaking and perhaps even the New York Times (but not Bush officials) should be criminally investigated, saying she “deplored the leak,” that “it is tragic that a lot of our capability is now across the pages of the newspapers,” and that the whistleblowers were “despicable.” And Eric Lichtblau himself described how Harman, in 2004, attempted very aggressively to convince him not to write about the NSA program.
Hear Harman on NPR attempting to explain her involvement in the AIPAC case.
Investigators acknowledged that Harman "completed a crime" with her actions. However, she apparently was not pursued by the Bush Administration because she was seen as an asset for selling their domestic spying/surveillance program at a time when the case was receiving a lot of scrutiny and negative press.
This is what should happen when a member of Congress tries to work with a group like AIPAC for the interests of another government, even when that government is spying against that Congressmembers own Country. She should have been prosecuted. At a minimum, she should consider stepping down- if the reports turn out to be true.