'NOT A JOURNALIST'
George Conway: ‘Hannity Has No First Amendment or Shield Law Privilege’
George Conway, the well-known legal expert who successfully argued and won a unanimous verdict at the Supreme Court, is tossing cold water on Sean Hannity‘s attorney’s claim that the January 6 Committee requesting his voluntary cooperation “would raise serious constitutional issues, including First Amendment concerns regarding freedom of the press.”
Sean Hannity is the Fox News host who at times has claimed he is a journalist while often saying he is not. Fox News itself has refused to call him a journalist when pressed.
On Tuesday the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack made public a letter it sent him, detailing his stunning texts to then-Trump White House chief of staff Mark Meadows. The Committee wrote: “At this time, we are specifically focused on a series of your communications with President Trump, White House staff and President Trump’s legal team between December 31, 2020, and January 20, 2021.”
Hannity has no right to complain about his First Amendment freedoms being violated.
“Hannity has no First Amendment or shield law privilege here,” writes Conway.
“Hannity’s not a journalist. And he certainly wasn’t acting as a journalist when he engaged in these communications” with the White House, Conway adds.
Conway also points to New York State law that makes clear any shield law protections can only be invoked “in the course of gathering or obtaining news for publication … or for public dissemination.”
He concludes: “Hannity wasn’t reporting. He was giving political advice. He has no journalistic First Amendment or similar privilege to invoke.”
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