Journalists say rights are ignored
WASHINGTON — First, there was the news that the Justice Department had secretly seized telephone records of reporters at The Associated Press.
Reports later surfaced that the department had investigated a Fox News journalist as a potential criminal for doing his job.
Those actions by President Obama's administration are part of an unprecedented crackdown on classified national security leaks.
And that has led journalists, First Amendment scholars and groups that advocate for government transparency to question how much the White House values a free press.
“The scope of this action calls into question the very integrity of Department of Justice policies toward the press and its ability to balance, on its own, its police powers against the First Amendment rights of the news media and the public's interest in reporting on all manner of government conduct,” according to a recent letter to Attorney General Eric Holder from 52 media organizations, including McClatchy.
Obama said he is trying to strike a balance between the media's First Amendment protections against government censorship and national security interests.
But his administration has aggressively prosecuted whistle-blowers under the 1917 Espionage Act.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Thousands attend B.B. King viewing
- Texas waters yield 4 bodies as death toll climbs; rainfall records fall across state
- Republicans claim enough votes to pass fast-track trade bill
- Defense chief says U.S. can fly over South China Sea
- Mind was ‘falling apart,’ Colorado theater killing suspect says
- Nivolumab shines in fighting cancerous lung tumors in immunotherapy regimen
- Houthis capture at least 4 U.S. citizens
- H3N2 dog flu not cause for panic, experts say
- FBI says lab errors extend to 1999
- Former quadriplegic runs, walks to show others they can