Testing the Anti-Sedition Act

(Dead links replaced on reposting.)

I’ve argued tiresomely (heh) that the problem with the McCain-Feingold Anti-Sedition Act is that it gives a privileged position to one kind of commercial speech — the kind made by commercial enterprises that happen to be in the media business — above other kinds of commercial speech, e.g., advertising.

I’ve also argued that it’s a big mistake for bloggers to be bought off, opinion-wise, by a carve-out exempting the Internet from this sort of regulation while leaving other media / advertising restrictions in place.

Now someone’s testing that hypothesis, and the constitutionality of this dubious distinction, by buying a cable news station for the explicit purpose of political speech (the purest First Amendment interest of all). (Hat tip to the light-on-permalinks Mickey Kaus.) We had already asked how this would play out if a blogger ran for office.  Perhaps something will give as it plays out the other way around.

(Cross-posted on Dean’s World.)

UPDATE:   Over three years later, it doesn’t appear that anything has been resolved on this issue.

Ron Coleman

I write this blog.

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