The Supreme Court has been asked to pause temporarily the Trump administration’s White House social media regulations that stipulate who can request access to President Donald Trump’s official accounts.
The case was brought by the Knight Institute and two individual Twitter users. It argues that the restrictions posed “a nationwide burden on speech” and violated the First Amendment. The original complaint was filed against the Trump administration in 2017 when it unveiled its rules for requesting access to the president’s Twitter accounts.
In their request to the Supreme Court, the Knight Institute argued that a freeze of the White House social media rules was necessary to protect free speech and that the “public interest counsels strongly in favor of a stay.”
The Knight Institute claims that the rules unfairly restrict people from engaging in political speech and that the current process discriminates against people who have expressive desires to send the President a tweet or retweet one from him. The Institute claims that the rules also violate Equal Protection rights by categorizing some users differently than others.
The Supreme Court’s decision to grant the stay or not will have wide ramifications. If the stay is granted, it would allow many people to once again talk directly to the President by tweeting at him, a major shift from the current set-up, in which only the most privileged have access.