Speech

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks with the Governor of Missouri Mike Parson as he arrives in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S., July 26, 2018. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Missouri Auditor Wants Clarification On Governor’s Use Of First Amendment To Hide Public Information

May 7, 2019: Can The First Amendment Be Used To Redact Information?  Missouri’s State Auditor is asking the attorney general to decide whether Governor Mike Parson broke the law when redacting information from public records requests. Nicole Galloway, the state auditor, cited recent reports in which the governor’s office wielded the First Amendment as a reason for withholding personal contact[Read More…]

May 13, 2019 Speech, Top Stories
Photo credit: REUTERS/Andy Clark

Sticker Shock: Charges Dropped Against Man Arrested For “Obscene” Car Decal

May 10, 2019: He is Now Threatening to Sue the Sheriff’s Office  A Florida man who was arrested for refusing to alter a car decal a deputy claimed was “obscene” will not be prosecuted, officials said yesterday. Dillon Shane Webb was arrested and charged earlier this week by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office for violating Florida’s obscenity law for having[Read More…]

May 13, 2019 Speech, Top Stories
FILE PHOTO:    House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) chairs a House Intelligence Committee hearing titled "Putin's Playbook: The Kremlin's Use of Oligarchs, Money and Intelligence in 2016 and Beyond" on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., March 28, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

Rep. Adam Schiff Proposes Amendment To Overturn Citizens United

Representative Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) introduced a constitutional amendment to overturn the Supreme Courts’ 2010 Citizens United ruling that lifted restrictions on corporate campaign contributions. The proposed amendment would allow Congress and states to impose reasonable limits on campaign contributions, and allow states to create mechanisms for public funding of campaigns.

May 10, 2019 Below the Fold, Speech
First Amendment Watch Co-Sponsors Talk On “Hate Speech on Social Media: Is There a Way to More Civil Discussion?”

First Amendment Watch Co-Sponsors Talk On “Hate Speech on Social Media: Is There a Way to More Civil Discussion?”

First Amendment Watch will co-host a panel discussion with ConSource on the topic of  “Hate Speech on Social Media: Is There a Way to More Civil Discussion?” The panel will address important issues surrounding online hate speech in the U.S. and other parts of the world that lack First Amendment protections.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (2nd R) holds a news conference at the Supreme Court building in Washington, U.S. June 9, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

Federal Judge Strikes Down Texas Anti-BDS Law For Violating the First Amendment

A federal judge in Texas ruled that a law that prohibits state contractors from boycotting Israel violates the First Amendment. Bahia Amawi, a U.S. citizen of Palestinian descent, worked as an independent contractor for a school district in Austin, Texas for nine years. Last year, when her contract came up for renewal, it contained a clause that said she wouldn’t boycott Israel. She refused to sign it, so the school district terminated her services.

April 26, 2019 Speech, Top Stories
Cruz Challenging FEC Over Campaign Finance Limitation Arguing That It Restricts Political Speech

Cruz Challenging FEC Over Campaign Finance Limitation Arguing That It Restricts Political Speech

April 5, 2019: Cruz Is Suing Over What He Calls “Arbitrary Restrictions” On Political Speech Senator Ted Cruz is suing the Federal Election Committee over a provision of Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA) that he says violates political candidates’ and campaign donors’ First Amendment right to free political speech.  Cruz is specifically challenging Section 304 BCRA, also called the McCain–Feingold[Read More…]

April 11, 2019 Speech, Top Stories
Catherine J. Ross: Trump’s Latest Threat To Free Speech And The Academy

Catherine J. Ross: Trump’s Latest Threat To Free Speech And The Academy

Catherine J. Ross, professor of law at George Washington University Law School, explains the possible issues that could arise if President Trump signs an executive order requiring colleges to support free speech on their campuses in order to receive federal research funds.

“Ultimately, the central constitutional risk inherent in Trump’s proposed executive order is all too familiar: it will chill protected speech. What’s more, it will likely violate central tenets of the Speech Clause when enforced,” she writes.

March 21, 2019 Below the Fold, Essays, Speech
Cop at traffic stop

Sixth Circuit: A Raised Middle Finger Is Free Speech

March 13, 2019: The Officer “Should Have Known Better,” The Court Said Giving the middle finger is protected speech under the First Amendment, a federal appeals court ruled. In a 3-0 decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit sided with a Michigan woman who sued a police officer for violating her constitutional rights after he pulled[Read More…]

March 21, 2019 Below the Fold, Speech
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at National Harbor, Maryland, U.S., February 24, 2018.      REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

CA Rep. Devin Nunes Sues Twitter And Three Users for $250M Over Defamation, Negligence and Conspiracy

Nunes is accusing Twitter of “knowingly hosting and monetizing content that is clearly abusive, hateful and defamatory” to undermine the public’s confidence in him, thereby benefiting his political opponents.

March 20, 2019 Libel, Speech, Top Stories
New York Fair Trial Free Press Conference

New York Fair Trial Free Press Conference

Every year, the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) convenes a panel of journalists, judges, and lawyers to discuss a hypothetical case involving free speech, the freedom of the press, and citizens’ right to a fair trial. In October, 2018 the program explored a hypothetical case in which an incumbent Governor who’s running for reelection, is going through a contentious[Read More…]