House Republican Chairman Mike Pence took the floor yesterday to speak on the Free Flow of Information Act, which will protect reporters from having to reveal their sources. Here is an excerpt and see the video below:
“As a conservative who believes in limited government, I believe the only check on government power in real time is a free and independent press. A free press ensures the flow of information to the public, and let me say, during a time when the role of government in our lives and in our enterprises seems to grow every day, ensuring the vitality of a free and independent press is more important than ever.
...“With this I close: long ago, Thomas Jefferson warned, ‘Our liberty cannot be guarded but by the freedom of the press, nor that limited without danger of losing it.’ Jefferson’s words ring into this chamber today, and passage of the Free Flow of Information Act—I believe—is necessary and consistent with that charge, to not only explicitly, but fully provide for the freedom of press in our nation, and protect the liberty of future generations. With the bipartisan support of my colleagues in Congress and this new Administration, let us seize this opportunity to put a stitch in this tear in the First Amendment freedom of the press, and let us do our part to ensure the vitality of a free and independent press for ourselves and our posterity.”
The Act was also sponsored by Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), who said this: “The absence of federal legislation protecting reporters' sources limits the public's access to information which is vital to the functioning of a democratic society. The press allows citizens to serve as watchdogs, speaking out about and exposing what are often illegal, corrupt, or dangerous activities by both private and government actors."