Press eyes 'source' ruling very closely

A federal appeals court recently ordered reporters Judith Miller (The New York Times) and Matthew Cooper (Time) to reveal confidential sources.

A federal appeals court recently ordered reporters Judith Miller (The New York Times) and Matthew Cooper (Time) to reveal confidential sources.

The ruling came as part of an ongoing investigation into who leaked the name of CIA operative Valerie Plame to the press in 2003. Plame was named in classified documents found by James Guckert, who used an alias to gain access. Broadcast outlets displayed keen interest in the decision, as it could have broad ramifications.

Most frequent messages

1. Miller and Cooper could go to jail for failing to reveal their sources

2. The reporters have argued that they are protected under the First Amendment

3. The judges ruled reporters do not have the right to refuse to cooperate with grand juries

4. Certain news industry advocates are urging passage of a proposed federal shield law

5. Democrats seek investigation into how Guckert got access to classified documents

Based on analysis of more than 10,000 radio and TV broadcast news programs from February 15-18.

Evaluation and analysis by VMS

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