Associated Press CEO: Phone Grab 'Unconstitutional'

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The Associated Press continues to lash out against the government's secret subpoena of reporters' phone records.

AP President and CEO Gary Pruitt says what the Justice Department did was unconstitutional.

"It was sweeping and broad and beyond what they needed to do," Pruitt charged.

He said sources are now much less willing to talk to AP journalists, adding  that it has already had an effect on newsgathering.

"If they restrict that apparatus ... the people of the United States will only know what the government wants them to know and that's not what the framers of the Constitution had in mind when they wrote the First Amendment," he said.
     
The Justice Department says it was conducting an investigation into how AP learned about an al Qaeda bomb plot in Yemen before it was made public last year.

Meanwhile, Pruitt suggested he hasn't ruled out taking legal action.

"It's too early to know if we'll take legal action but I can tell you we are positively displeased and we do feel that our constitutional rights have been violated," he said.

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