The U.S. Supreme Court has granted certiorari for the case ‘Louisiana and Missouri vs. Biden et al.,’ which centers on free speech issues concerning the federal government’s actions related to social media censorship during the COVID-19 pandemic. This decision has the potential to define the federal government’s authority in regulating speech on social media platforms.
Solicitor General Liz Murrill, in a press release, expressed their satisfaction with the Supreme Court’s decision: “We are pleased to learn that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear this case, giving us yet another opportunity to defend the people from this assault on our First Amendment rights. It brings us one step closer to reestablishing the protections guaranteed to us in the Constitution and under the First Amendment. We hope that the Supreme Court will agree that this gross abuse of power must stop and never happen again.”
The lawsuit, filed in May 2022, was initiated by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt. Their legal action alleges that the Biden administration engaged in censoring conservative viewpoints on social media during the COVID-19 pandemic.
U.S. District Court Judge Terry Doughty issued an order on July 4, 2022, which prohibited several federal agencies, including the Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Census Bureau, FBI, U.S. Department of Justice, and members of the president’s executive office, from engaging in discussions with social media companies that may lead to the removal, deletion, suppression, or reduction of content containing protected free speech.
The federal government appealed Doughty’s order to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled in favor of Louisiana and Missouri.