June 19, 2020
AAP JOINS AMICUS BRIEF IN UNITED STATES V. BOLTON
The Association of American Publishers (AAP) has joined the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, Dow Jones, The New York Times and The Washington Post in filing an amicus brief in United States v. Bolton, arguing that the Administration’s request to block Simon & Schuster, booksellers and distributors from publishing and distributing Bolton’s book is an unprecedented and unconstitutional prior restraint. The brief asks the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to deny the Government’s request.
The brief argues that by suing only Bolton, but seeking a broad injunction against Simon & Schuster and countless other non-parties to the case, the Government is attempting an end-run around the seminal Pentagon Papers Supreme Court case in order to censor core First Amendment-protected speech.
“The Government could not have sued Simon & Schuster in this case directly, and served it with injunction papers, without running straight into the legacy of the Pentagon Papers case and the considerable Supreme Court precedent from both before and after that decision that make clear the First Amendment protects the publication and dissemination of speech from prior restraint,” stated the brief.
The brief also notes that the Government’s requested injunction would not remedy any claimed harm from the book’s release, as the book has already been printed, shipped, and reported on by several prominent news outlets.
The brief can be found here. AAP President and CEO Maria A. Pallante’s comment on the Department of Justice’s lawsuit against John Bolton for the publication of his book The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir is here.
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