Both President Donald Trump and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden have voiced support for revoking Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA). In response, Libertarian congressman Justin Amash warned against the ramifications of such a move.
"Both Donald Trump and Joe Biden want to 'revoke' Section 230," Amash tweeted on Friday. "This would have a chilling effect on the freedom of speech. Using the power of the state to silence speech you don't like is un-American."
As reported by National Post, the federal law protects social media companies like Twitter from being held responsible for the content posted by users of their websites. According to Trump, the law allows such companies to evade responsibility for their actions. But as the outlet noted, the law does not require that internet sites be neutral. In addition, the publication noted that only Congress has the power to change Section 230.
Amash believes that repealing Section 230 would be harmful to free speech and also suggested Trump could be affected by this damage.
"Without Section 230, Twitter would likely shut down @realDonaldTrump over liability concerns," he tweeted. "Read the law."
Amash also pushed back on the argument that Twitter is immune from legal action for defamatory content it creates — a narrative that has been promoted by Trump and allies like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
"The fact is that Twitter doesn't create much of its own content. If Donald Trump wants to sue over fact checks that Twitter creates, he's welcome to do so. Section 230 doesn't prohibit it. But he will lose nonetheless because of the First Amendment."