(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, joined by Sen. John Ensign of Nevada and Sen. Scott Brown of Massachusetts, introduced legislation Thursday to amend the Espionage Act in an effort to target Wikileaks and founder Julian Assange.
The lawmakers said their bill, known as the SHIELD Act, will help close gaps in the law and make it illegal to publish the names of sources in the U.S. military and intelligence communities.
"He is a computer hacker and an anarchist," Ensign said of Assange in a speech on the Senate floor Thursday. "Make no mistake -- these actions have harmed our friends and helped our enemies in a manner prejudicial to the safety and the national interest of the United States."
"I have no doubt that Julian Assange is going to put out another document on his website and another one after that and once he does, this bill will give the administration increased flexibility to deal with him and potentially other copy-cat organizations that aspire to his likeness," Ensign added.
Ensign attempted to address concerns that the bill could affect traditional media outlets by stating that "this bill does not target journalists" and "does not stop anyone from publishing leaks."
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