A district court in New York on Wednesday ruled that United States President Donald Trump cannot block his critics on Twitter as doing so violates their right to free speech under the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in Manhattan said that Trump’s Twitter account is a public forum and blocking people who reply to his tweets with differing opinions constitutes viewpoint discrimination, which violates the First Amendment, reported BBC.
The ruling comes as a major boost for the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University who brought the case forward representing seven plaintiffs who have been blocked by the US President
In ruling against Trump, the court pointed to past White House assurances that the president’s Twitter account is an official political channel. In her 75-page opinion, the United States district judge Naomi Reice Buchwald wrote: “The president presents the @realDonaldTrump account as being a presidential account as opposed to a personal account and, more importantly, uses the account to take actions that can be taken only by the president as president,” quoted The Guardian.
The lawsuit against Donald Trump had also named White House social media director and assistant to the president Daniel Scavino.
“Because no government official is above the law and because all government officials are presumed to follow the law once the judiciary has said what the law is, we must assume that the President and Scavino will remedy the blocking we have held to be unconstitutional,” Buchwald wrote.
Meanwhile, Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza, the journalist who was one of the plaintiffs in the case, has been tweeting about her victory
I sued the President, and I won. https://t.co/hE3rWcxIAY
— RPBP (@rpbp) May 23, 2018
The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University also lauded the decision.
Although, the White House has yet to comment on the judge’s ruling.
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Posted by जनता का रिपोर्टर on Tuesday, 22 May 2018