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Rights, precedents, and values at stake as Justice Anthony Kennedy resigns, opening way for contentious battle over new Trump nominee to U.S. Supreme Court. Crackdown on immigration protesters justified by claims that demonstrations interfere with access by lawyers to clients. Trump strategy of intimidating critics on Twitter raises novel First Amendment concerns. Muslim Ban ruling holds implications for how courts will weigh presidential rhetoric. -Suzanne Nossel, Chief Executive Officer 


The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy Will Retire
Justice Kennedy has been a swing vote on the court for nearly 30 years, embracing views on gay rights, abortion, and the death penalty but helped conservatives trim voting rights, block gun control, and unleash campaign spending by corporations. 

Portland ICE Protest Grows; Demonstrators Seek to Abolish Agency Amid Immigration Crisis
As the Trump administration continues its border crackdown on illegal immigration amid fluctuating policies, this protest has served as a spark to others across the country. “I’m just appalled at what’s been done in the name of this country.”

Trump Opponents Should Stop Getting Into Twitter Wars With Him, Says Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
Trump has long used Twitter for advancing his agenda, attacking his enemies, and making thinly-veiled threats against them. “Getting into Twitter fights with the president is not exactly… where we’re going to find progress as a nation.”

The Supreme Court’s Travel Ban Ruling Could Have Big Implications for Trump’s Twitter Account
Trump’s tweets on the travel ban played a key role in a case that sought to cast the White House policy as anti-Muslim. Along with other statements Trump had made, tweets revealed a disregard for religious freedom, critics of the travel ban said.

Justice Elena Kagan Says The Supreme Court Turned The First Amendment ‘Into A Sword’
The Supreme Court ruled in the Janus case that public-sector workers cannot be required to pay fees to the unions that represent them, upending a 40-year-old legal precedent at the foundation of union contracts across the country.


Poland Changes its Controversial Holocaust Law
Poland has amended a law that made it a crime punishable by up to three years in jail to say “Polish concentration camps,” four months after the law went into effect and badly strained ties with Israel and the U.S.

Taiwan Bars Mainland China Reporter for Spreading ‘Fake News’
Taiwan authorities have barred a Chinese reporter from working on the island, accusing him of spreading “fake news”. It is the first time a mainland Chinese reporter has been banned for “creating cross-strait conflict”.

‘Fake News’ and Thousands of Stolen Ballots Ahead of Mexico’s Biggest Election Ever
In the Mexican state of Tabasco, 11,025 ballots were stolen and destroyed and fake news runs rampant. With more than 18,000 positions up for grabs across Mexico, the polls have been hailed as the largest ever in the country’s history.

Turkey Frees Prominent Journalist from Jail Pending Appeal
A Turkish court has released newspaper columnist and academic Mehmet Altan from prison, pending an appeal of his conviction and life sentence for alleged involvement in Turkey’s 2016 failed coup attempt.

Vietnam Forces Facebook and Google to Pick Privacy or Growth
Vietnam’s new cybersecurity law could force tech giants to choose between access to digital economies and protecting their users’ privacy. If requested, they’ll also be required to hand user data, suspected of anti-state activity, over to the government.

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