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The Supreme Court asks the Biden administration its thoughts on Texas and Florida social media free speech laws

Asking the federal government to way in.

The Supreme Court of the United States has asked the Biden administration for input in cases involving and ’s social media free speech laws.

The laws, passed separately by both states, have been challenged by social media companies who want to be able to censor posts based on political viewpoint.

“The Solicitor General is invited to file briefs in these cases expressing the views of the United States,” the Supreme Court wrote in an order on Jan. 23.

Texas’ HB 20 prohibits online platforms from censoring content based on viewpoint. It also requires platforms to be more transparent about their content moderation policies and decisions, and requires them to notify users when their content has been censored and provide them with an avenue to appeal censorship decisions.

Texas’s law was challenged by industry group NetChoice, which often represents Big Tech, and blocked by a district court before being upheld by the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit last October.

Like the Texas law, Florida’s law requires platforms to be transparent about their content moderation policies and decisions. It also bans platforms from deplatforming any “journalistic enterprise” and political candidates.

NetChoice successfully challenged the law in a district court, which issued a preliminary injunction, a decision that was upheld by the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. The state went to the Supreme Court hoping the injunction would be lifted.

NetChoice is happy that the Supreme Court is involving the Solicitor General in the cases.

“We are excited that the Supreme Court is seriously considering taking up our cases and is asking the Solicitor General for its take on the cases,” NetChoice said in a statement Monday. “We expect the Solicitor General will recognize the rights of websites and to call on the Supreme Court to take up the cases and find for NetChoice and CCIA.”

If the SCOTUS ends up granting review, it will more likely hear arguments at the end of this year and will likely not make a decision until 2024.

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