When Can DOJ Subpoena Reporters?

Josh Marshall says,

But if recollection serves, there are DOJ guidelines which say that prosecutors should exercise a great deal of discretion when trying to compel testimony from journalists. They're not supposed to do it just to tie up a few loose ends, but only if there's real and significant crime they're trying to prosecute. And before they do so, they're supposed to have exhausted all other possible ways to get at the information.

He's right. There are both U.S. Attorney Guidelines (contained here and here in the U.S. Attorney's Manual) and regulations (contained here, taken from the Code of Federal Regulations.)

Josh will be on Al Franken's radio show today. (update: appearance canceled.)

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