Paul Ryan: Intel leaks 'the problem of the leaker, not the journalist'

Paul Ryan: Intel leaks 'the problem of the leaker, not the journalist'
© Greg Nash

Speaker of the House Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanDemocrats hit Scalia over LGBTQ rights Three-way clash set to dominate Democratic debate Krystal Ball touts Sanders odds in Texas MORE (R-Wis.) defended journalists Friday, saying that while intelligence leaks compromise national security, it's "the problem of the leaker, not the journalist."

"Leaks are concerning because leaks can often compromise national security, but that’s the problem of the leaker not the journalist," Ryan said at an event in Muskego, Wis., on Friday afternoon.

Ryan's comment comes just hours after Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsTrump reignites court fight with Ninth Circuit pick Democrats press Nadler to hold Lewandowski in contempt Pelosi: Lewandowski should have been held in contempt 'right then and there' MORE announced a governmentwide crackdown on leakers.

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Sessions warned that the media could be a part of that crackdown, and the Justice Department could ask for sources behind leaks. The investigation will include a review of the Justice Department's policies on subpoenas for media outlets that publish sensitive information.



“We respect the important role that the press plays and will give them respect, but it is not unlimited. They cannot place lives at risk with impunity,” Sessions said. “We must balance their role with protecting our national security and the lives of those who serve in our intelligence community, the armed forces and all law abiding Americans.”

“I have this message for the intelligence community: The Department of Justice is open for business,” he added. “And I have this warning for would-be leakers: Don’t do it.”

The top Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerOvernight Defense: Trump hits Iranian central bank with sanctions | Trump meeting with Ukrainian leader at UN | Trump touts relationship with North Korea's Kim as 'best thing' for US Hillicon Valley: Zuckerberg courts critics on Capitol Hill | Amazon makes climate pledge | Senate panel approves 0M for state election security Zuckerberg woos Washington critics during visit MORE (D-Va.), said on Thursday that Congress should probe the leak of transcripts of President Trump's phone calls with the leaders of Mexico and Australia, a leak both political parties have condemned.