Saturday 21 September 2019

President cannot block critics on Twitter, judge rules

Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald issued the written decision on Wednesday.

President Donald Trump (Evan Vucci/AP)
President Donald Trump (Evan Vucci/AP)

By Associated Press Reporters

A federal judge in New York has said that President Donald Trump violates the First Amendment by blocking critics on Twitter for political speech.

Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in Manhattan issued the written decision on Wednesday.

In the ruling, she said no government official — including the president — is above the law.

The case was brought last July by the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University and seven individuals blocked by Mr Trump after criticising the Republican president.

After a hearing this year, the judge had suggested that President Trump mute rather than block some of his critics.

At the time, a Justice Department attorney agreed that muting would enable President Trump to avoid a tweet he does not want to read.

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