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Friday, January 19, 2007

Bipartisan letter asks AG to drop subpoenas in BALCO case

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Washington -- The new Democratic chairman of the House Judiciary Committee Thursday urged the Justice Department to withdraw its subpoenas for two San Francisco Chronicle reporters, which seek to force them to name their confidential sources for federal grand jury testimony in which top athletes admitted illegal steroid use.

House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers of Michigan and Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., the top Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, wrote Attorney General Alberto Gonzales criticizing the agency's efforts to jail Chronicle reporters Lance Williams and Mark Fainaru-Wada for refusing to comply with the subpoenas.

"The subpoenas issued to those reporters and their newspaper seeking confidential source information are troubling both on the specific facts of their case and because of the great damage they could cause to our nation's press and the First Amendment," the lawmakers wrote.

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