NEW ORLEANS, La.—Today, NetChoice and the Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) filed an unopposed motion to stay the mandate pending a petition of certiorari from the U.S. Supreme Court in our case, NetChoice & CCIA v. Paxton.
Texas has agreed not to oppose our motion asking the Fifth Circuit to pause HB 20 from taking effect as the Supreme Court is likely to grant certiorari in our cases. Thus, the status quo should be maintained.
The Fifth Circuit’s 2-1 ruling conflicts directly with the unanimous decision of the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, creating a stark circuit split, which requires Supreme Court intervention. The Eleventh Circuit held that (1) websites, platforms, and apps have First Amendment rights; (2) those rights include the right to editorial discretion; (3) editorial discretion protects content moderation; (4) laws that infringe those rights are unconstitutional; and (5) websites like Facebook.com, YouTube.com, Etsy.com, and others are not common carriers.
If granted, the motion will keep HB 20 enjoined as the case proceeds through the courts.
“The Fifth Circuit’s opinion ignores that the Supreme Court has already signaled that HB 20 is likely unconstitutional and should remain enjoined,” said Chris Marchese, NetChoice Counsel. “As our unopposed motion makes clear, the 2-1 decision turns the First Amendment on its head and directly conflicts with the Eleventh Circuit’s unanimous ruling.”
“HB 20 will bury the internet in vile content, which is why it must remain enjoined until the case can be heard by the Supreme Court,” continued Marchese.
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