An administration official says the White House supports a move in the Senate to revive a media shield bill -- one that protects journalists and their employers from having to reveal information. That information would include the identity of sources who had been promised confidentiality.

The White House (Uyen Le, Getty Images)

The law does contain some exceptions in instances of national security.

New York Democrat Charles Schumer plans to revive the legislation from four years ago. The move comes on the heels of the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at The Associated Press.

Schumer says if the media shield measure had been enacted, there would have been a "fairer, more deliberate process in this case."

A White House official says President Barack Obama's liaison to the Senate placed a phone call this morning to Schumer's office to ask him to revive the bill -- a move the senator had already planned to make.

The support from Obama signals an effort by the White House to take action in the face of heated criticism from lawmakers from both parties and from news organizations about his commitment to protecting civil liberties and freedom of the press.


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