Sanders co-chair: Greenwald charges could cause 'chilling effect on journalism across the world'

Sanders co-chair: Greenwald charges could cause 'chilling effect on journalism across the world'

Rep. Ro KhannaRohit (Ro) KhannaOmar endorses progressive Georgia Democrat running for House seat Democrats call for Twitter, Facebook to take down Pelosi video posted by Trump The Memo: Sanders supporters sense victory in Iowa MORE (D-Calif.), a co-chairman for Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders says idea he can't work with Republicans is 'total nonsense' Sanders defends Castro comments in wake of backlash from some Democrats Sanders releases list of how to pay for his proposals MORE’s (I-Vt.) presidential campaign, spoke out Tuesday against charges by the Brazilian government against American journalist Glenn Greenwald, saying the country illustrated the need for Espionage Act reform in the U.S.

“Prosecuting reporters for doing their work will have chilling effect on journalism across the world,” Khanna tweeted Tuesday. “I'm crafting legislation to protect journalists from being prosecuted over their published work.”

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Khanna wrote he is currently developing legislation to amend the law, which was the basis for federal charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian AssangeJulian Paul AssangeUS lawyer argues Assange put people's lives at risk Protesters in UK call on government to refuse Assange extradition to US Prosecutor defends initial DOJ recommendation at Stone sentencing MORE to ensure it cannot be used to indict journalists.

"The Trump administration charging Assange opened up a chilling effect on journalism," Khanna told CBS News.

"If you are the recipient of information that is sensitive and you haven't been involved in assisting the collection of information, but you're just receiving that information from a source and publishing it for journalistic purposes — then you can't be prosecuted.”

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Khanna said that he hopes to work with Rep. Justin AmashJustin AmashBarr ensnared in Roger Stone firestorm House passes bipartisan bill to create women's history museum Weld bets on New Hampshire to fuel long shot bid against Trump MORE (I-Mich.), a co-founder of the House Freedom Caucus who was later removed from it after leaving the Republican Party, as well as conservative members he believes may be similarly concerned about the potential for government overreach.

The eventual bill, he said, “will be a major protection for journalists' ability to work on these critical issues.”

Greenwald, who lives in Brazil, has been accused by prosecutors of cyber crimes in relation to his publication of private phone conversations involving high-level Brazilian officials. He has denied all charges and called them “an obvious attempt to attack a free press” in retaliation for his reporting on President Jair Bolsonaro's government.