Floyd Abrams Sees Trump’s Anti-Media Tweets as Double-Edged Swords

His Twitter trail could be a gift to lawyers for the news industry during leak investigations into articles that made the president mad enough to pick up his Android and tap, Tap, TAP!

It could provide great grist for legal arguments that the investigations are less about prosecuting damaging leaks than they are about punishing journalists.

.. his new book, “The Soul of the First Amendment,” which he called “really a story of American exceptionalism.” It argues that the United States’ protections for free speech are the best in the world, at least as of now.

.. he helped argue the conservative side of the Citizens United case, which allowed corporations and unions to spend more freely in elections.

.. things have been much worse. There were days when censorship was rampant and real reporting could land you in prison, right here in the United States. For instance, as Mr. Abrams’s book notes, it was not all that atypical when, in 1901, a Chicago court sentenced the managing editor and a reporter at The Chicago American to jail for an article that was critical of one of its decisions.

.. by the second half of the last century, the courts had begun to view “the First Amendment in an expansive and generally highly protective way.” It started with liberal jurists and eventually spread to the conservative jurists as well

.. Gawker, which a Florida jury hit with a $140 million verdict in an invasion-of-privacy lawsuit last year. Without the financial wherewithal to fight on through the appeals process, its owners went into bankruptcy and sold to Univision.