When a federal appellate court decided last year that two reporters must either reveal their confidential sources to a grand jury or face jail time, the court did not hesitate in relying on the majority opinion in the Supreme Court’s sole comment on the reporter’s privilege—Branzburg v. Hayes. “The Highest Court has spoken and never revisited the question. Without doubt, that is the end of the matter,” Judge Sentelle wrote for the three-judge panel of the Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
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