Tuesday, May 30, 2006


The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that government employees do not have pure First Amendment protection when it comes to blowing the whistle against alleged misconduct.

The Associated Press reports:
By a 5-4 vote, justices said the nation's 20 million public employees do not have carte blanche free speech rights to disclose government's inner-workings. New Justice Samuel Alito cast the tie-breaking vote.

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, writing for the court's majority, said the First Amendment does not protect "every statement a public employee makes in the course of doing his or her job."

The decision came after the case was argued twice this term, once before Justice Sandra Day O'Connor retired in January, and again after her successor, Alito, joined the bench.
The case stemmed from a lawsuit filed by a Los Angeles prosecutor, who said he was demoted for exposing a deputy's lie on a search warrant application.

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