The Court of Appeals in Washington dismissed a lawsuit by journalist and congressional candidate Laura Loomer against social media companies. The lawsuit claimed her getting banned from all of the major social media platforms is a violation of her rights.
According to the court, Loomer and Freedom Watch, a non-profit lobbying organization, failed to prove that the social platforms violated her rights.
“Freedom Watch argues that we should infer an agreement primarily from the Platforms’ parallel behavior, as each company purportedly refused to provide certain services to Freedom Watch. But, as the district court explained, parallel conduct alone cannot support a claim under the Sherman Act,” ruled the three-judge panel.
We obtained a copy of the ruling for you here.
In the opinion of the judges, the sued companies, which included Facebook, Twitter, and Google, are incapable of violating the freedom of speech.
“In general, the First Amendment ‘prohibits only governmental abridgment of speech,'” explained the judges alluding to the Manhattan Community Access Corp. vs. Halleck case.
We obtained a copy of that Supreme Court ruling for you here.
In the lawsuit, Freedom Watch suggested conspiracy by saying that the companies have politically motivated goals and pursuing a revenue-losing strategy. But in the judges’ view, those two factors do not prove an unlawful conspiracy. They viewed it as “lawful independent action by different platforms.”
The D.C. Attorney General’s Office and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law supported the lawsuit. Both argued that the D.C. Human Rights Act, which forbids discrimination based on many factors, including political affiliation, should apply online.
Loomer, who is running for a seat in the Florida House of representatives, thinks that the decision by the court is politically motivated. In a statement, Loomer said:
“My lawyer and I are confident of success going en banc to the full court. Today’s decision is clearly politically motivated, given the fact the DC Circuit’s ruling comes the same day President Trump said his justice department would take serious action against these same Big Tech giants I have sued for censoring conservatives. There’s no such thing as a coincidence. We are prepared to take this all the way to the Supreme Court.”