Are the courts getting ready to crack down on reporters?


Very few principles are as firmly entrenched in First Amendment law as the doctrine of “prior restraint.” That term, as the great First Amendment scholar Melville Nimmer explained, describes “administrative and judicial orders forbidding certain communications when issued in advance of the time that such communications are to occur.” In other words, if the government makes you submit your expression in advance for approval, that’s prior restraint. And if a court orders you not to say or print anything on a subject, that, too, is prior restraint — which is all but completely forbidden.

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