Crist: Press Freedom Vital to Nation's Democracy

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Gov. Charlie Crist says journalists must continue to hold politicians and government officials accountable.

Crist reaffirmed his commitment to open government at the annual First Amendment Foundation luncheon Monday. He said freedom of the press is vital to the nation's democracy and designated this Sunshine Week in Florida.

Pete Weitzel, a former senior editor at The Miami Herald, was a special guest at the luncheon. An annual award for contributions to open government is named for him. Speaker Larry Cretul, R-Ocala, and Senate President Jeff Atwater, R-North Palm Beach, also attended.

The keynote speaker was Lucy Dalglish, executive director of the
Reporter's Committee for Freedom of the Press in Washington, D.C.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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