AOC Rejects Request from Free Speech Group to Unblock Her Critics on Twitter
Democrat responds to The Knight First Amendment Institute's letter
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) defended her right to block Twitter users with opposing views, arguing "harassment is not a viewpoint.”
The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University called AOC's blocking "unconstitutional" and urged the freshman congresswoman to stop barring users with opposing viewpoints.
“I have 5.2 million followers. Less than 20 accounts are blocked for ongoing harassment. 0 are my constituents,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.
“No one is entitled to abuse.”
The Democrat added that “people are free to speak whatever classist, racist, false, misogynistic, bigoted comments they’d like,” before saying that they “do not have the right to force others to endure their harassment and abuse.”
The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University penned the letter to the congresswoman on Wednesday, urging her to stop blocking people based on viewpoints.
“You use the account as an extension of your office—to share information about congressional hearings, to explain policy proposals, to advocate legislation, and to solicit public comment about issues relating to government,” the letter reads.
1. I have 5.2 million followers. Less than 20 accounts are blocked for ongoing harassment. 0 are my constituents.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 29, 2019
2. Harassment is not a viewpoint. Some accounts, like the Daily Caller, posted fake nude photos of me & abused my comments to spread it. No one is entitled to abuse. https://t.co/0QWKqJFzRe
People are free to speak whatever classist, racist, false, misogynistic, bigoted comments they’d like.— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 29, 2019
They do not have the right to force others to endure their harassment and abuse. ✌🏽
“The @AOC account is important to you as a legislator, to your constituents, and to others who seek to understand and influence your legislative decisions and priorities."
AOC was sued by the former New York Assemblyman Dov Hikind in July after she blocked him on her r personal Twitter account.
"Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has blocked me on Twitter yesterday ,apparently because my critique of her tweets and policies have been too stinging," Hikind said in a statement announcing the suit.
Joseph Saladino, the New York GOP congressional hopeful, also sued Ocasio-Cortez after he was blocked.
In July, an appeals court ruled President Donald Trump cannot block Twitter users from his official @realdonaldtrump account, because it is used for official purposes.