Posted on December 30, 2022

Sen. Cardin: If You ‘Espouse Hate,’ You’re ‘Not Protected’ by the First Amendment

Lindsay Kornick, Fox News, December 29, 2022

Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., sent shockwaves on social media on Wednesday, during a Senate committee hearing, for claiming that if you “espouse hate,” you may not have First Amendment protections.

Cardin brought up First Amendment protections during closing statements on ways to regulate speech on the internet through both the private sector and the government.

“It is incredibly valuable part of our fabric and can be used for good, and we know that it can be used for bad. I admire your desire for the private sector to do what’s right. We do hope that’s the case, but I do think there’s a role for government consistent with our First Amendment. For us establishing parameters, if you espouse hate, if you espouse violence, you’re not protected under the First Amendment,” Cardin said.

He added, “I think we can be more aggressive in the way that we handle that type of use of the internet. We know that Europe has done things, I think we have to learn things from each other. I hope we can figure out the strategy that we need everybody united on it.”

Cardin’s comments saw intense backlash for calling for limitations to speech based on “espousing hate.”