Politico’s Dylan Byers Sneers at Attkisson Hacking Lawsuit

Sharyl Attkisson

On Monday, former CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson revealed details of a $35 million lawsuit against the Justice Department and the U.S. Postal Service for the alleged hacking of her computers. This led to a new round of snark from Politico’s Dylan Byers, who suggested on Twitter Attkisson was taking the wrong approach:

This raises an obvious question. What is the right approach under the circumstances? Sharyl Attkisson pointed this out in reply to Byers (which, to be fair, was not without a touch of snark):

Attkisson has been seeking information on an FBI investigation into her hacking which she says she was never notified about. She learned of the investigation through a previous FOIA request but was unable to get any further details or an explanation why she had not been interviewed. The current lawsuit filed in conjunction with Judicial Watch is an attempt to force the DOJ to provide that additional information.

Attkisson alleged in her book that her computer was hacked by someone reportedly connected to the federal government. At least three separate investigations of two different computers concluded a hacking had most likely occurred. When a report requested and paid for by CBS News first confirmed the hacking had taken place, the news outlet issued a statement acknowledging it. Attkisson later hired an independent investigator, who reached the same conclusion.

As Attkisson’s story has come to light, Byers has become increasingly dismissive of Attkisson and her claims. Last March he wrote a story about Attkisson’s departure from CBS News titled, “The Right loses its hero at CBS.” Byers cited unnamed sources saying that some at the network felt Attkisson’s coverage had become biased against the Obama administration. Despite the headline, Byers also quoted unnamed sources close to Attkisson who accused CBS Evening News producer Pat Shevlin of political bias. Shevlin announced she was leaving the network less than two weeks after Attkisson’s announcement.

Since then, Byers’ reporting has become more skeptical. In June, when Attkisson announced she would join Heritage’s news site The Daily Signal, Byers wrote a brief story which ended “Go figure.” Later, when Attkisson released a video of her computer deleting material without her touching the keyboard, Byers wrote, “There’s reason to doubt that Attkisson was hacked at all.” He linked a post at Vox which he said “demonstrated how Attkisson’s so-called ‘evidence'” wasn’t reliable. About a week later, Byers highlighted some supposed inconsistencies in Attkisson’s story which had been brought up by left-wing site Media Matters. His post today linked back to these previous pieces questioning her credibility.

Whatever the reason for Byers’ snarky tone and posts critical of Attkisson, he seems inclined to keep it to himself. When Hot Air‘s Ed Morrissey asked Byers what Attkisson should have done instead of filing a lawsuit, he got no response. Breitbart News also contacted Byers by email and asked if he would be willing to comment on the apparent feud, but received no reply.