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March 11, 2019

House Democrats Trample First Amendment with vote on H.R. 1

Bill would restrict constitutionally protected speech and stifle citizen groups

In an extraordinary display of contempt for the First Amendment, House Democrats today voted 234-193 to pass H.R. 1, the so-called “For the People Act of 2019.” The bill was carefully crafted to maximize short-term political benefits for the dominant faction of one political party, while running roughshod over the First Amendment protections for political speech that have been clearly and forcefully articulated by the U.S. Supreme Court in a series of landmark First Amendment rulings.

“Clearly the words of the First Amendment, namely that ‘Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech’ mean absolutely nothing to Nancy Pelosi and her Democrat colleagues,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “H.R. 1 is a dangerous assault by elected officials on the right of Americans and citizen organizations like National Right to Life to freely talk about the actions and voting records of the elected officials themselves.”

Enactment of H.R. 1 would not be a curb on corruption, but is itself a type of corruption – an abuse of the lawmaking power, by which incumbent lawmakers employ the threat of criminal sanctions, among other deterrents, to reduce the amount of private speech regarding the actions of the lawmakers themselves.

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