At the Republican National Convention this week, Rep. Peter King from Long Island, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, attacked The Associated Press for its award-winning investigation into the NYPD’s illegal surveillance operations.

King had nothing but contempt for the respected journalists responsible for the AP’s reports, Matt Apuzzo and Adam Goldman, telling Salon reporter Michael Tracey that the two had “no moral integrity.” And ProPublica, another award-winning operation that debunked widely cited claims that the NYPD had foiled 14 terrorist plots since 9/11 — a claim King repeated at the convention — is a “left-wing publication” equally deserving of disregard.

“It’s the best police department in the world,” King said of the NYPD, and went on to slather praise on Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly. “We should thank god every night for the NYPD, and we should pray for the souls of the AP,” he said.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

Michael Tracey at Salon:

“Disgraceful,” King crowed when I mentioned the [AP] investigation. “First of all, they cannot find one thing the NYPD did that was illegal or wrong. Everything was open-source; they did not violate one law, not one provision of the Constitution. Meanwhile, there have been 14 plots against New York that have been stopped. We are the No. 1 target in the world. At any given time there are plots either in place or being contemplated, and they’ve just done a phenomenal job. They’re not violating anyone’s civil liberties or civil rights. The Associated Press — it was a terrible cheap shot and disgrace.”

… According to King, generally, corruption in the NYPD was not much of a problem: “There’s always some corruption in any department; whether it’s in the media, whether it’s in the military, police, welfare agencies — wherever you go. The New York City Police Department is extremely honest, and the level of security they’re providing is top-rate. First-rate.”

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