Newsmen's Rights

Archive Report

Fight over protecting new sources

Government-Press Battle in Jailing of Reporters

The press and the government have been set on a collision course over a question that poses a constitutional dilemma and holds wide political implications. It is whether members of the press may legally refuse to divulge their confidential sources and information to grand juries and other agencies of government. At least three newsmen have gone to jail in recent weeks for their refusals and others face the same fate. The Supreme Court has spoken on the issue but by no means has settled it. Though declining to provide newsmen immunity from prosecution when they refused to testify, the Court did suggest that Congress or the state legislatures might enact laws offering such protection. These ...

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