Lobbying groups representing Facebook, Twitter, Google and other tech companies filed an emergency petition with the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday, blocking a Texas law banning large social media platforms from banning users based on their political views. The Texas law came into force on Wednesday when the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted the state’s request for a stay with a district court judge’s injunction blocking the law.
The law prohibits social media companies with more than 50 million active users per month from banning members based on their political views and requires them to publicly disclose how they moderate content. It was signed into law by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, in September.
Internet lobby groups NetChoice and the Computer & Communications Industry Association filed a lawsuit against the measure, and U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman of Austin, Texas, issued a preliminary injunction in December. Pitman had found that the law would harm the freedom of expression of social media companies under the First Amendment to the US Constitution.
In their emergency request, the technology groups asked the Supreme Court to “allow the district court’s careful reasoning to remain in force while an orderly appeal process takes place.”
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