Absolutely yes. If a journalist comes across sensitive information that they feel should be in the public domain there ought be a protocol for them to follow based on a code of ethics. Next step should be an editorial meet up with lawyers present. If from that meeting the editor decides to publish then all well and good.
Ideally there should be no pressure from government! But we don't live in an ideal world.
In the USA you have the 1st amendment which gives a journalist freedom to publish any material they feel ought to be out there. No court can touch them in theory.
In the UK things are a bit different. We've had a case recently involving the Guardian and it's thrown light on the darker side of government. Civil servants - who basically run the show behind the scenes - have been trying to persuade editors not to publish certain stories!!
This is all very British....you can imagine the phone call from Whitehall to the Guardian....hello old chap, with regards to Mr Snowden and his comments...you know....isn't it better to keep the whole sad story under wraps....no need to publish just yet....could cause a rumpus across the pond.....know what I mean?
The Guardian has decided to publish all controversial pieces from now on in New York!! Just to be safe. This is very sad and shows you how we operate in this country.
The state should not interfere with journalism of this nature. End of story.