The American Society of Journalists and Authors’ “First Amendment committee had narrowly voted to give Miller the prize for her dedication to protecting sources, but the full board has now voted to not accept that decision, based on its opinion that her entire career, and even her current actions in the Plame/CIA leak case, cast doubt on her credentials for this award.” The final vote was unanimous.
Anita Bartholomew, a freelance journalist who has contributed to Reader’s Digest, wrote in a resignation letter [resigning from the First Amendment committee], “The First Amendment is designed to prevent government interference with a free press. Miller, by shielding a government official or officials who attempted to use the press to retaliate against a whistleblower, and scare off other would-be whistleblowers, has allied herself with government interference with, and censorship of, whistleblowers. When your source IS the government, and the government is attempting to use you to target a whistleblower, the notion of shielding a source must be reconsidered. To apply standard practices regarding sources to hiding wrongdoing at the highest levels of government perverts the intent of the First Amendment.”