President Donald Trump’s lawyers filed court documents on Thursday that could serve as the beginning of the end for the first amendment of the United States Constitution.
The court filing claims that protesters “have no right” to “express dissenting views” at Trump’s campaign rallies because such protests infringed on his First Amendment rights.
Three protesters filed a lawsuit after they were roughed up during a March 2016 Trump campaign rally in Louisville, Kentucky. The protesters were attacked after Trump told his supporters in attendance to “get ’em out of here!”
Trump’s lawyers say his calls to have the protesters removed were protected under the President’s first amendment rights. The federal district court judge hearing the case issued a ruling late last month questioning that argument, as well as the claim that Trump didn’t intend for his supporters to use force.
The new filing asks the judge to pause the proceedings and allow Trump’s legal team to appeal the ruling to a higher court “before subjecting the President to ‘unique’ and extraordinary burdens of litigation.”
His lawyers argue that after making his call for removal Trump then added, “Don’t hurt em.”
His lawyers then claim that Trump had every right to ask for the removal of the protesters since they “obviously interfered with the Trump campaign’s First Amendment right” by “vigorously expressing their disdain for Mr. Trump,” including by chanting and holding up signs depicting Trump’s face on the body of a pig, alon with various other messages.
“Of course, protesters have their own First Amendment right to express dissenting views, but they have no right to do so as part of the campaign rally of the political candidates they oppose,” Trump’s lawyers wrote.
His lawyers ended on this note: “Even if Mr. Trump implicitly instructed the audience to remove the protesters by using force if necessary, his speech was still entirely lawful and protected under the First Amendment unless he advocated a greater degree of force than was necessary under the circumstances.”
“Absent that type of unlawful advocacy, Mr. Trump cannot be held liable for incitement. It makes no difference whether the crowd reacted with unlawful violence beyond what Mr. Trump advocated,” Trump’s lawyers added.
Translation: Trump wants to protect his own first amendment protections but could care less about the constitutional rights of other Americans.
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James Kosur is the former Editor-In-Chief and co-founder of Hill Reporter. He recently served as an editor for Business Insider and various other publications. James and his partners sold Hill Reporter to a new owner in July 2019.