Pa. Bus 'Atheist' Ad Ban Violates Free Speech, 3rd Circ. Says

By Linda Chiem (September 17, 2019, 8:40 PM EDT) -- A split Third Circuit ruled Tuesday that a Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania, transit authority's policy barring all bus advertisements referring to religion or atheism violates the First Amendment because it discriminates based on viewpoint.

In a 2-1 precedential opinion, a Third Circuit panel determined that the County of Lackawanna Transit System, which operates the bus transit system in Scranton, Pennsylvania, ran afoul of the First Amendment when it enacted a 2013 policy with prohibitions on religious and political messages. That policy "clarified" a 2011 policy that already banned "disparaging" ads and ads for firearms, alcohol and tobacco.

As such, the majority reversed...

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