US President Donald Trump is challenging that ruling of a federal appeals court that ruled he violated the U.S. Constitution when he blocked some Twitter users from viewing his tweets.
Trump Blocks Followers Who Criticize Him
In court papers that the Justice Department filed on Friday, Trump sought a rehearing by the full 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York. He described the decision of the three-judge panel that upheld a May 2018 lower court ruling that forced him to unblock followers as "fundamentally misconceived."
Trump unblocked followers from the @realDonaldTrump Twitter account for the reason that they criticized him or his policies.
The Knight First Amendment Institute to file a suit that argued the President and his communications team violated the First Amendment by blocking individuals on Twitter.
A federal judge in New York ruled that he violated the Constitution when he blocks users on Twitter.
White House social media director Dan Scavino was also a defendant in the case. He is also challenging the ruling of the appeals court.
Blocking Followers Of @realdonaldtrump Ruled Unconstitutional
Trump's Twitter account has more than 63 million followers. The President uses the account to make important announcements. He also frequently uses his Twitter account to make comments about news, politicians, and even celebrities.
"We hold that portions of the @realDonaldTrump account -- the 'interactive space' where Twitter users may directly engage with the content of the President's tweets -- are properly analyzed under the "'public forum' doctrines set forth by the Supreme Court," Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald wrote in her ruling.
The judges on the appeals court also concluded that the handle is a public forum, citing that it is sometimes managed by government officials and used for official government business.
"[Trump] engaged in unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination by utilizing Twitter's 'blocking' function," the ruling reads, according to CNN. "We hold that he engaged in such discrimination."