May 30 2006

USSC Slaps Leakers – Little Protection

Published by at 6:04 pm under All General Discussions,Leak Investigations

The New York Times, Washington Post and other media outlets are going to see a serious cutback in leaks coming from government sources on the news coming out of the US Supreme Court:

The Supreme Court today narrowed the First Amendment protections for public employees who reveal perceived wrongdoing they happen to observe in the course of doing their jobs.

The decision enhances the ability of governments at all levels to punish employees for speaking out, shielding officials in many instances from lawsuits for violating the right to free speech.


Kennedy distinguished between an employee speaking out in his role as a citizen on matters of public interest, which may be protected by the First Amendment, from an employee who speaks out “pursuant to official duties.”

That means the inidividual cannot take the law into their own hands, cannot circumvent the democratic process with personal or partisan views, and cannot risk our lives simply because they have a different opinion than the overarching government (which is elected to enact the people’s will).

Hopefully, this law will apply to Congress as well.  Serves them right since they leak more than anyone else.  The can change policy on the House and Senate floor.  That was what they were elected to do.  They should never try to change policies by illegally leaking information to the news media.  They have voices, the simply need to use them.

2 responses so far

2 Responses to “USSC Slaps Leakers – Little Protection”

  1. wickedpinto says:

    It’s a limited ruling.

    It says that you CAN be fired for speaking in a professional capacity, however it leaves the “personal” capacity open.

    That means that a 1st ammendment argument could be made for an individual who is commenting on information collected on a professional level, but disagreeing with personal political opinions.

    This isn’t NEAR done.

    I agree with . . . I think it was madam althouse, and Insty, though I’m not a lawyer, just a guy who can read the tea leaves, this is gonna be a constant theme in the courts for some time.

  2. MerlinOS2 says:

    Hmmm Alito was the swing vote to carry the constitutional correctness. Like I am suprised! I could go on about this but I will leave it at what AJ said. Poof gone.