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Newspaper Asserts a First Amendment Right to Erase Hillary Clinton from Situation Room Photo

Posted May 10, 2011 7:03 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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An ultra-Orthodox Jewish newspaper is apologizing for deleting Hillary Clinton from a photo of President Obama’s national security team, even as it asserts a First Amendment right to do so.

The Hasidic newspaper Di Tzeitung published a photo of Obama and his team watching the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound, but two women were missing—the secretary of state and the counterterrorism director, according to CNN and the Washington Post. The White House bars alteration of photos released to the press.

Di Tzeitung apologized on Monday, saying it should not have altered the photo. The newspaper doesn’t publish photos of women “because of the laws of modesty” and it is not intended to disparage women, its statement said.

Yet the newspaper asserted a right to make the change. “The First Amendment to the Constitution guarantees freedom of religion,” the statement said. “That has precedence even to our cherished freedom of the press!”

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