A federal judge in California dismissed Donald Trump’s lawsuit against Twitter on Friday, obscuring at least one avenue the former president and prolific tweeter might have used to return to his favorite platform.
Trump’s argument that the social media company and its then-CEO Jack Dorsey violated his right to free speech failed, to put it lightly, to convince Judge James Donato of the Northern District of California.
“The main allegation of the plaintiffs is that the defendants have “censorship”.[ed]”The plaintiffs’ Twitter accounts violate their right to freedom of expression under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution,” Donato wrote. “The plaintiffs are not emerging from a position of strength.”
By dumping the lawsuit as is, Donato pointed out the obvious: Twitter is a private company and not bound by the First Amendment, which protects Americans from it government Efforts to restrict language. Basically, Twitter can do whatever it wants when it comes to moderating content, just like any other online platform.
Donato shot down the connection Trump’s legal team was trying to establish between the US government and Twitter, dismissing claims that the company was somehow acting on behalf of the federal government because Democratic lawmakers wanted Trump kicked off the platform.
“The amended complaint merely provides a body of allegations that some Democratic members of Congress wanted Mr. Trump and ‘the views he holds’ banned from Twitter,” Donato wrote.
Despite the lawsuit, Trump has maintained that he would not return to Twitter even if given the chance. And with the company under the erratic leadership of misguided free speech absolutist Elon Musk, he might indeed be given that opportunity. Meanwhile, Trump continues to promote his own app, Truth Social, which currently ranks eleventh on the App Store’s social networking chart.
Trump and the lawsuit’s other plaintiffs — organizations and individuals who have also been booted from Twitter — will seek to reconsider their argument, but Donato points out that the bar is set high because the separation of private and public is “a matter.” is of great importance.”
“Plaintiffs’ only hope of establishing a First Amendment claim is to make a plausible assertion that Twitter is in fact acting as a government,” Donato wrote. “That’s not a simple claim, and for good reason.”