A lawyer for former President Donald Trump announced he believes Trump’s lawsuit against Google, Facebook and Twitter could go to the Supreme Court because those companies are doing the “bidding of the government.”
In an interview with Fox News, John Coale argued that a number of factors contribute to Big Tech acting as “state actors,” which makes them liable to some government standards.
“The basis for all of this case is that private companies cannot be empowered by the government via Congress, via [Section] 230,” Coale said, according to the New York Post. “The Biden administration and members of Congress can’t delegate what they cannot do themselves.”
“This issue will in the end be decided in the Supreme Court. It’s that important,” he added.
After the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, several social media companies banned Trump from their platforms. Facebook said the ban could last until 2023. Others, such as Twitter, decided on a permanent ban.
Last week, members of Coale’s legal team filed a motion for a preliminary injunction against Google to allow the former president to return to YouTube. His legal team argues that a number of factors are cause for social media companies to be treated as government actors.
“There’s three tests and if they flunk one test,” Coale said, “they’re government actors.”
“The first [is] if … government officials, be they congressmen, senators or people in the executive branch, threaten these companies — they did it at congressional hearings, they did it in the media and we show examples of that in the preliminary injunction.”
“The other thing is, if the government encourages censorship that is unconstitutional.”
“The third test is if … the private company is doing the bidding of the government, and they are,” he added.
“We had [President Joe] Biden’s press secretary confirm that last month, she said that they’re working closely with Facebook to prevent misinformation on the virus.”
”Because, you know, for all you out there who are Democrats and liberals or whatever you are, you’re next,” Coale said.
”Now, it’s the conservatives. But as history shows us, it will turn. Maybe five years from now, maybe three months from now, maybe 10 years — but you’re next.”
Coale’s team also plans to file preliminary injunctions for Twitter and Facebook. Any appeals to the decision would go to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.