Trump trips over First Amendment in blocking citizens from his official Twitter account

Finding that President Donald Trump’s use of Twitter was political and therefore a “public forum,” a federal judge ruled that the president could not block Twitter users from his account for hostile or contrary expressions. The ruling marks a significant step in freeing social media from viewpoint discrimination.  (San Francisco Chronicle, May 23, 2018, by Benny Evangelista)

Law professor Garrett Epps, The Atlantic, May 24, 2018, points out that the judge, Naomi Reice Buchwald, backed her finding that Trump’s Twitter account was a “forum” by noting the @realDonald Trump account is registered to the 45th President of the U.S., the tweets are official records preserved under the federal records act and the account has been used to conduct official presidential business such as appointments and dismissals and conduct of  foreign policy.

Another federal district judge rendered a judgment  in March supporting Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin who has blocked about 600 people on his social media accounts. The judge said no one is preventing constituents from expressing their views in multiple forums and that Bevin’s accounts could be reserved for him to make his own case without running afoul of the First Amendment. (Courier Journal, March 31, 2018, by Bruce Schreiner of The Associated Press)