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Roberts Hearing: Nominee Comments On Media Rights & First Amendment

Quoting MSNBC.com: “The government should not bar the media from recording events to which the public has access, such as the government’s response and recovery effort from the effects of Hurricane Katrina, chief justice nominee John Roberts told the Senate Judiciary Committee.”

“There is great difficulty whenever you try to distinguish between public rights and media rights,” Roberts said. “If it’s a situation in which the public is being given access, you can’t discriminate against the media and say, as a general matter, that the media don’t have access, because their access rights, of course, correspond with those of the public.”

But Roberts added that he is not up to speed on First Amendment law or precedents, and he noted that there exist “some perfectly valid reasons for excluding media,” though he didn’t name them…

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