Trump Cannot Block His Haters on Twitter Anymore Court Rules

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The appeals court said it was “not persuaded” by Trump’s claim he’s using Twitter as a private citizen.

President
Donald Trump
can no longer shut down his Twitter critics with one click of the “block” button. A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that Trump’s penchant for blocking his Twitter foes officially violates the First Amendment, as his Twitter account—which the president claimed in court was “private”—is an official “digital forum” that must remain open to Trump’s allies and critics alike. “The First Amendment does not permit a public official who utilizes a social media account for all manner of official purposes to exclude persons from an otherwise‐open online dialogue because they expressed views with which the official disagrees,” Circuit Judge
Barrington D. Parker
opinion
for the court.
The appeals court ruling upholds a previous federal district court ruling in favor of the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, which brought the lawsuit on behalf of seven Twitter users who were blocked by the president after making anti-Trump comments. (“To be fair you didn’t win the WH: Russia won it for you,” plaintiff
Rebecca Buckwalter
tweeted
at Trump, prompting her block.) Trump’s legal team claimed that the president’s Twitter account, which was established in 2009 when Trump was a private citizen, “is exclusively a vehicle for his own speech to which the Individual Plaintiffs have no right of access and to which the First Amendment does not apply.” To which Parker replied: “We are not persuaded.” The judge pointed out that the president’s Twitter account is frequently used for official presidential proclamations, from announcing presidential appointments to going against the Supreme Court on the Census.

Former press secretary
Sean Spicer
even said the president’s tweets should be considered “official statements by the President of the United States,” while Trump himself has
described
his use of social media as “MODERN DAY PRESIDENTIAL.”
“The fact that any Twitter user can block another account does not mean that the President somehow becomes a private person when he does so,” Parker wrote. “Because the President, as we have seen, acts in an official capacity when he tweets, we conclude that he acts in the same capacity when he blocks those who disagree with him.”
The Justice Department has not yet determined whether they will appeal the ruling to the Supreme Court; spokeswoman
Kelly Laco
New York Times
the administration was “disappointed with the court’s decision and are exploring possible next steps.” The Knight First Amendment Institute, meanwhile, celebrated the court’s decision as an important ruling in determining how public officials use social media going forward. “This decision will ensure that people aren’t excluded from these forums simply because of their viewpoints, and that public officials aren’t insulated from their constituents’ criticism,” director
Jameel Jaffer
said in a statement. “The decision will help ensure the integrity and vitality of digital spaces that are increasingly important to our democracy.”
Tuesday’s ruling marked the latest consideration in the courts of how the First Amendment applies to social media. The Supreme Court’s June

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  • Me @ this world
  • @CaliVia305 😭😭😭
  • The judge should tell @Realdonaldtrump to RESIGN!!! Then he can block anybody he damn well please!!
  • Although I relish the thought of @realDonaldTrump angrily reading hate-filled tweets, in his crazy mind, you know he’s thinking “Yippee-More Fan Mail!”
  • Can we have a ruling if he’s allowed to mask them
  • What a crock! His using Twitter as a private citizen is as twisted as his mind.
  • Great!
  • Also mr. President Donald Trump I don’t see none of your border patrol offices or ice killing migrants over crossing the border illegally but in New York City in the whole United States they shoot and black people they just shot one for standing next
  • Right next to his call mr. President all these police is just killing black people in America and United States ice and killing migrants if anybody they should mantle is the police department because I don’t see how they just killing us and the Democrats ain’t saying nothing Vega
  • I’m urging all black woman update United States of America stop protecting your black man stop attacking your black child stop protecting your neighborhood if you still have one they shut the government down right go look outside you can get a bag of rice neither can your kids
  • Who fought is it me-too movement stand up your black men and young black children is dying in the street you fighting for immigration but you not fighting for your own you are allowing your own to get killed and not say nothing
  • How you running for the president United States in the sanctuary City will you allow black people to stop and go poor and homeless it’s sending the police to kill him and take away the black families why take a break all the laws in the world so who’s the voice on the apply to t
  • Also mr. Donald Trump I don’t think that any May are any Governor that’s running a sanctuary City you wanted to stand against the laws and trying to enforce the laws only against black African a night should be able to run for the president United States of America that means
  • Mr. President the police just killed another black man for standing in front of his car if that happened at the border patrol it would have been all over the news but we had to find it on Instagram was the Democrats up for that what was directions people where was Nancy Pelosi
  • Mr. Donald Trump dish and not be at no given circumstances no Sanctuary cities in United States of America
  • I missed a Donald Trump everybody who gave an oath to United States of America if they have a sanctuary City they should be impeached because they’re old says not to United States of America it’s to the other countries that they Shanks whoever for just should be not know Cent
  • From dis forward on I’m signing citizens executive orders to bring all Americans in all foreign countries that we contribute money and finance big ones and billions of dollars every year to come home
  • And any state official governing all farm who goes against the floor and the policy of the United States we will not support them we will withdraw all our troops I’m bring them home so they can be with their families and their children
  • And protect our own land that’s your job as being a president of United States of America to protect our own land if they want to kill each other let him that’s not your job your job is to protect us your citizens
  • Everyday America’s is being lost make a be on our own land if they want to kill each other and I’m on countries Donald Trump let them but they know when they come to United States of America is well protected and I will citizens as well protected and our president going to
  • And also mr. Donald Trump I’m signing an executive order all black African Americans black African American woman are all African black African tribe just like Martha Luther King and Malcolm X death of you kill one we migrate
  • And also I’m sending executive orders coming from up top if you kill one black person we migrate are all black woman all black men woman and child the next time you turn on your TV than your child have to watch a black man getting killed migrate and I own country
  • Ask black people we lost online we lost our schools we lost our property we lost our women we lost our child we damn near lost our minds we all came from somewhere else let’s get this s*** right
  • I’m talking about well Malcolm X was alive the Martin Luther King was alive when Harriet Tubman was alive what’s up Jake Douglas was a loss I believe. Y’all still alive if somebody’s body wow do you are come out we need you
  • Cabeza de pichí Cabeza de pichí Cabeza de pichí Cabeza de pichí
  • Good!!! He needs a dose of the truth from time to time.
  • Shouldn’t that also be the same for every elected official using twitter for official purposes?