Donald Trump signs order in attempt to sue social media sites that fact-check his lies

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Donald Trump signs an executive order seeking the power to undo a 1996 law so he can sue social media sites for censoring or fact-checking his posts ahead of the 2020 election.

The order comes after Twitter adds disclaimers to two of his tweets spreading disinformation.

The executive order tests the boundaries of the White House’s authority. In a long-shot legal bid, it seeks to curtail the power of large social media platforms by reinterpreting a critical 1996 law that shields websites and tech companies from lawsuits. But legal experts on both the right and the left have raised serious concerns about the proposal. They say it may be unconstitutional because it risks infringing on the First Amendment rights of private companies and because it attempts to circumvent the two other branches of government.

“(Trump) is trying to steal for himself the power of the courts and Congress to rewrite decades of settled law,” said Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon, the architect of the legislation that the order seeks to reinterpret. “He decides what’s legal based on what’s in his interest.”


The intention is to override Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which prevents websites like Twitter from being held legally responsible for content that users post. The executive order must not serve its purpose, though; appealing Section 230 becomes a primary focus of Trump and the GOP months later.

Click here to see all posts about Section 230.


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