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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Rep. Mike Pence Discusses His "Free Flow of Information Act of 2005" in the Distinguished Journalist Lecture at The Heritage Foundation


Rep. Mike Pence, R-IN, delivered the 2005 Distinguished Journalist Lecture earlier today at The Heritage Foundation. A former television and radio commentator, Pence is the prime sponsor of the "Free Flow of Information Act of 2005," which establishes in federal law for the first time ever statuatory protections for journalists and their confidential sources.

Among much else, Pence clarified what his proposal would do for bloggers, noting that he believes "most bloggers would be covered" but that in the final analysis "the courts will decide on a blog-by-blog basis" which sites are reporting news and which are only linking to others reporting the news.

I had the privilege of introducing Pence, who is also Chairman of the Republican Study Committee, which is the largest caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives. Despite a pouring rain and wind, a standing-room-only crowd packed Heritage's Van Andel Center for the Pence presentation.

Among those attending were Rick Dunham, President of the National Press Club, and the Freedom Forum's Paul McMasters. Also in the audience were Allison Bethel, Detroit News Washington Bureau Chief, Alex Mooney, Executive Director of the National Journalism Center, and Allison Hayward, Editor of Sceptic's Eye blog.

You can listen to the entire proceding here as a webcast on The Heritage Foundation web site.

UPDATE: 10/26

Here's The Washington Times story by reporter Jennifer Harper on Pence's lecture.