5th Circuit Rewrites A Century Of 1st Amendment Law To Argue Internet Companies Have No Right To Moderate
As far as I can tell, in the area the 5th Circuit appeals court has jurisdiction, websites no longer have any 1st Amendment editorial rights. That’s the result of what appears to me to be the…
“However, remember, back in May when Texas initially reinstated the law, it said it would come out with its full ruling later. Over the last few months I’ve occasionally pondered (sometimes on Twitter) whether the 5th Circuit would ever get around to actually releasing an opinion. And that’s what it just did. And, as 1st Amendment lawyer Ken White notes, it’s “the most angrily incoherent First Amendment decision I think I’ve ever read.”
It is difficult to state how completely disconnected from reality this ruling is, and how dangerously incoherent it is. It effectively says that companies no longer have a 1st Amendment right to their own editorial policies. Under this ruling, any state in the 5th Circuit could, in theory, mandate that news organizations must cover certain politicians or certain other content. It could, in theory, allow a state to mandate that any news organization must publish opinion pieces by politicians.
It completely flies in the face of the 1st Amendment’s association rights and the right to editorial discretion.
There’s going to be plenty to say about this ruling, which will go down in the annals of history as a complete embarrassment to the judiciary, but let’s hit the lowest points.”