Trump’s team told the Knight Institute on July 20 that the president does not intend to block those users, according to the lawsuit. The Knight Institute lawsuit wants Trump to push the unblocking of all users unless there are justifiable reasons to keep them blocked on an individualized basis.
“Those accused of the continued blockade of Individual Plaintiffs … violate their First Amendment rights,” Friday’s case said. “It is without restitution restricting their rights to read or participate in the discussion that takes place in the public forum of the @realDonaldTrump account.”
The case continued: “Unconstitutionally restricts their right of access to statements which defendants would otherwise make available to the general public, and their right to petition the government for redress of complaints. “
Trump was ordered to block Twitter users in the 2018 decision on the grounds that cutting people off from important policy announcements for the things he tweeted was a violation of their free word. In challenging the decision, the Justice Department argued that Trump’s Twitter account is not government-owned and is free to exclude anyone who liked it on his private account, whose existence would be prior to his presidency.
“The decision of an official to exclude someone from his personal residence does not exercise government authority, even if he was giving an official declaration on that property on that day,” the Department of the Interior said. Justice argued in the August court hearing. “And what’s true for real estate is also true for a social media account.”
The White House declined to comment on the lawsuit. The Department of Justice did not immediately respond to a request for comment.