Transit Agency Can't Use Falsity As Defense For Rejecting Ads

Law360, Philadelphia (December 1, 2014, 5:41 PM EST) -- The purported falsity of anti-Islamic messages that the American Freedom Defense Initiative has sought to post on Philadelphia-area buses and trains cannot be raised as a defense in a First Amendment lawsuit challenging the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority's rejection of the advertisements.

U.S. District Court Judge Mitchell Goldberg ruled last Tuesday that testimony SEPTA had hoped to offer debunking advertisements that claimed, among other things, that "Islam-Jew hatred" is "in the Quran" had no place in AFDI's lawsuit challenging the agency's decision to bar the messages from being posted in its advertising space.

"Long-standing Supreme Court precedent instructs that political speech...

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