By Ann E. Marimow and Cat Zakrzewski,, 3-18-24

The Supreme Court seemed prepared March 18 to reject a Republican-led effort to sharply limit the federal government from pressuring social media companies to remove harmful posts and misinformation from their platforms.

A majority of justices from across the ideological spectrum expressed concern about hamstringing White House officials and other federal employees from communicating with tech giants about posts related to public health, national security, and elections that the government deems problematic.

The case involves a lawsuit initiated by two Republican-led states – Missouri and Louisiana – and individual social media users.  They accuse the Biden administration of violating the First Amendment by operating a sprawling federal “censorship enterprise” to influence platforms to modify or take down posts.

Justices Elena Kagan and Brett M. Kavanaugh, who previously worked in Democratic and Republican administrations, respectively, suggested that such exchanges were routine occurrences and did not amount to government censorship or coercion in violation of the constitutional right to free speech.  » Read More