by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
By Wednesday, Missouri v. Biden plaintiffs must respond in the Supreme Court to Biden administration claims that federal bureaucrats should get to filter everything Americans say via the internet for the sake of “national security.”
On Sept. 14, the Department of Justice (DOJ) made an emergency Supreme Court appeal to avoid lower court injunctions preventing the White House and federal agencies including the FBI from telling internet speech monopolies which keywords, posts, and accounts to suffocate. The court granted the appeal the same day, pausing lower-court injunctions stopping the federal government from holding a gun to internet monopolies’ heads to tell them what ideas to choke from the online public square.
The Biden administration didn’t contest any of the more than 20,000 pages of court documents showing essentially every major federal agency pressuring social media monopolies to take down ideas powerful Democrats don’t like or face federal lawsuits, investigations, and the removal of their monopoly powers.
Instead, it argued that obeying the First Amendment “imposed unprecedented limits on the ability of the President’s closest aides to use the bully pulpit to address matters of public concern, on the FBI’s ability to address threats to the Nation’s security, and on the CDC’s ability to relay public health information at platforms’ request.”
As independent reporter Matt Taibbi noted Friday, the position of Biden’s Department of Justice is essentially that the First Amendment endangers national security: “only government action against protected free speech remained barred by this injunction. The Biden administration just told the world ‘grave and irreparable harm’ would result from such limitations.”
That would be news to Presidents Lincoln, Wilson, Roosevelt, and Reagan, to name a few wartime presidents who were limited by that same Bill of Rights the Biden administration can’t seem to fathom how to function within.