Senator Joe Lieberman said that the New York Times may have committed a crime by accepting and publishing the State Department cables from WikiLeaks, and should be investigated for potential violations of the Espionage Act.
Speaking on Fox News on Tuesday, Lieberman told anchor Jenna Lee that WikiLeaks and its leader, Julian Assange, had committed the biggest violation of the Espionage Act in American history.
"Are other media outlets that have posted what WikiLeaks has put out there also culpable in this and could be charged with something?" Lee asked.
Lieberman responded that the question raised sensitive issues, because "it gets into America's First Amendment." But he said that, since WikiLeaks had certainly violated the Espionage Act, it was a real question whether the Times had also done so by accepting it.
"I'm not here to make a final judgment on that, but to me the New York Times has committed at least an act of bad citizenship," he said. "Whether they've committed a crime, I think that bears a very intensive inquiry by the Justice Department."