The Conservative commentator and political activist Candance Owens successfully took on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat and the US Representative for New York’s 14th congressional district.
Owens and AOC had several disagreements about a myriad of political aspects; however, AOC ended up blocking Owens in an effort to dodge the public exchange of thoughts across Twitter.
Owens then lawyered up and sent AOC a demand letter highlighting her desire to “litigate the matter” if AOC didn’t unblock her on Twitter by January 6th 2020.
“Too often it seems that the law is only applicable to one side of the political aisle. As a matter of ensuring equality, this week, I hired New York lawyer Jacob Weinstein to send Ms. Ocasio-Cortez a demand letter, highlighting our intention to litigate the matter, should she not unblock my account by end of the day, January 6th 2020. I am pleased to announce that as of writing, her lawyer has indicated that his client would concede to our demand,” wrote Owens. “OC blocked me because I am without question, her toughest critic.”
AOC has been notoriously known for blocking her critics across social media platforms. She recently had to apologize for blocking a user on Twitter who disagreed with her political opinions. This was done as part of a legal settlement.
A politician from New York, Dov Hikind, sued AOC on the grounds of the US Constitution’s First Amendment. While Hikind argued that he was cut out from an important conversation on the social media platform when AOC blocked him, the NY representative had a different tale to tell.
AOC stated that she was blocking users as a measure to deal with “harassment.” However, it is worth noting that she withdrew her stance later as she ended up apologizing to Hikind. “I have reconsidered my decision to block Dov Hikind from my Twitter account. Mr. Hikind has a First Amendment right to express his views and should not be blocked for them,” said AOC.
After a New York Federal appeals court upheld a lower court’s decision to prevent President Trump from blocking his critics across social media platforms, it became evident that public officials using social media channels for official communication cannot exclude their critics and naysayers by blocking them. Based on this line of argument, there have been several instances such as the one under discussion, wherein public officials were disallowed from blocking their critics.