CRS Legal Sidebar Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress Legal Sidebar. Sidewalks, Streets, and Tweets: Is Twitter a Public Forum? Valerie C. Brannon, Legislative Attorney. May 30, 2018.
“On May 23, 2018, a federal district court in New York in Knight First Amendment Institute v. Trump held that the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment prohibited President Trump from blocking Twitter users solely based on those users’ expression of their political views. In so doing, the court weighed in on the now-familiar but rapidly evolving debate over when an online forum qualifies as a “public forum” entitled to special consideration under the First Amendment. Significantly, the district court concluded that “the interactive space for replies and retweets created by each tweet sent by the @realDonaldTrump account” should be considered a “designated public forum” where the protections of the First Amendment apply. This ruling is limited to the @realDonaldTrump Twitter accountbut implicates a number of larger legal issues, including whena social media account is operated by the government rather than by a private citizen, and when the government has opened up that social media account as a forum for private speech.The ability of public officials to restrict private speech on Twitter may be of particular interest to Congress, given that almost all Members now have a Twitter accounts…”
Schumer took issue both with the president's legal team arguing he has the authority to self-pardon and Trump calling special counsel Robert Mueller's probe "unconstitutional."
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The Guardian – Immune cells from the woman’s own body used to wipe out tumours: “A woman with advanced breast cancer which had spread around her body has been completely cleared of the disease by a groundbreaking therapy that harnessed the power of her immune system to fight the tumours. It is the first time that a patient with late-stage breast cancer has been successfully treated by a form of immunotherapy that uses the patient’s own immune cells to find and destroy cancer cells that have formed in the body. Judy Perkins, an engineer from Florida, was 49 when she was selected for the radical new therapy after several rounds of routine chemotherapy failed to stop a tumour in her right breast from growing and spreading to her liver and other areas. At the time, she was given three years to live. Doctors who cared for the woman at the US National Cancer Institute in Maryland said Perkins’s response had been “remarkable”: the therapy wiped out cancer cells so effectively that she has now been free of the disease for two years. “My condition deteriorated a lot towards the end, and I had a tumour pressing on a nerve, which meant I spent my time trying not to move at all to avoid pain shooting down my arm. I had given up fighting,” Perkins said. “After the treatment dissolved most of my tumours, I was able to go for a 40-mile hike.”
AP: “National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden blew the lid off U.S. government surveillance methods five years ago, but intelligence chiefs complain that revelations from the trove of classified documents he disclosed are still trickling out. That includes recent reporting on a mass surveillance program run by close U.S. ally Japan and on how the NSA targeted bitcoin users to gather intelligence to combat narcotics and money laundering. The Intercept, an investigative publication with access to Snowden documents, published stories on both subjects. The top U.S. counterintelligence official said journalists have released only about 1 percent taken by the 34-year-old American, now living in exile in Russia, “so we don’t see this issue ending anytime soon.”
“This past year, we had more international, Snowden-related documents and breaches than ever,” Bill Evanina, who directs the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, said at a recent conference. “Since 2013, when Snowden left, there have been thousands of articles around the world with really sensitive stuff that’s been leaked.”
See also The Guardian: “Edward Snowden has no regrets five years on from leaking the biggest cache of top-secret documents in history. He is wanted by the US. He is in exile in Russia. But he is satisfied with the way his revelations of mass surveillance have rocked governments, intelligence agencies and major internet companies. In a phone interview to mark the anniversary of the day the Guardian broke the story, he recalled the day his world – and that of many others around the globe – changed for good. He went to sleep in his Hong Kong hotel room and when he woke, the news that the National Security Agency had been vacuuming up the phone data of millions of Americans had been live for several hours…”
In a statement, the president says all the players won't promise to stand for the national anthem, hand on heart.
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"We've never been in the data business," Cook tells NPR. He was responding to a report that Facebook struck deals giving Apple and other device makers access to Facebook users' personal information.
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Catherine Healy has spent more than 30 years as an activist and was instrumental in drafting legislation that legalized prostitution in New Zealand. Now she's becoming a dame.
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Ron Weber, 84, called 1,936 games from their inception in 1974 to 1997. But he retired before they made their first (and for a long time, only) final. Now, he and the team are getting a second chance.
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After decades at the helm of the company that changed the way the world consumes coffee, Schultz will hold the title of chairman emeritus. Pundits say he may be interested in a move to politics.
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King Abdullah appointed economist Omar Razzaz as his new prime minister. It will be up to Razzaz to defuse a crisis over a plan that would levy income tax even on those earning $11,000 a year.
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Companies are grappling with an influx of sexual harassment allegations, investigations and related training, as workers at all levels, in different industries come forward.
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The aide said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt asked for help procuring a mattress while he was apartment hunting. Federal ethics rules prohibit staff from doing private work for their superiors.
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Apple will allow users to get reports on how much their kids are using particular apps on their iPhones and iPads. The announcement follows pressure from shareholders about the overuse of technology.
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There's a new push to study the real-life effects of gun laws. "Red Flag" laws lower suicide rates; reductions in homicides are associated with tougher gun permit requirements.
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