Daily Caller: President Trump And The Issue Of Free Speech (In the News)

Daily Caller: President Trump And The Issue Of Free Speech

By Thomas Wheatley

Donald Trump is hardly the first public official to want to get back at his critics using libel laws. If he sues the publisher of “Fire and Fury,” the book on his presidency, he’ll likely fail. It’s worth revisiting why…

In an opinion by Justice William Brennan, the court struck down Alabama’s law and instituted a new legal requirement of “actual malice” for defamation of public officials, a standard now familiar to all First Amendment lawyers…

Sure, the Times’ advertisement was not factually precise, but imagine if it had to be. Every Tweet or Facebook comment containing a single falsehood about a public official could be subject to ruinous liability. Citizens and groups would dare not speak and the discourse essential to our republic’s survival would grind to a halt…

Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission reinforced the vast speech protections enshrined into federal law by decisions like New York Times v. Sullivan. Although Sullivan dealt with libel law where Citizens United concerned an outright ban on speech, the relationship between the two is clear: Had the Court in 1964 decided the Times, a corporation, did not have the same free speech rights as an individual, defeating Jim Crow would have proven that much harder.

The Center for Competitive Politics is now the Institute for Free Speech.