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Postman on Politics

Chief political reporter David Postman explores state, regional and national politics.

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December 3, 2007 8:30 AM

Supreme Court won't hear McDermott leak appeal

Posted by David Postman

The U.S. Supreme Court will not hear Rep. Jim McDermott's appeal of the lower court decision that said he has to pay nearly $1 million for leaking a tape of a conference call among Republican leaders. The Wall Street Journal says "the court didn't comment on its action."

McDermott issued a statement this morning saying he was disappointed that the Court of Appeals' decision wills tand, but said he was "proud to have vindicated important free speech rights on behalf of the American people and the press."

"The Court of Appeals majority accepted our argument that the First Amendment protects the disclosure of information under these circumstances, but then a different majority held that my position in Congress stripped me of that same protection.

"While I disagree with the Court of Appeals on the latter point, and think that its decision erodes the separation of powers doctrine, the fact remains that this litigation made important new First Amendment law that will protect the dissemination of truthful information on matters of public concern by the news media and the citizenry."

McDermott filed his appeal in September.

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