March 13, 2023

Comedian Sues Rep. Ocasio-Cortez for Blocking Him on Twitter

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has been sued by a comedian for blocking him on Twitter.

The lawmaker blocked Alex Stein, described by CNBC as a “political provocateur,” after he catcalled her outside the U.S. Capitol on July 13 and posted a video of the crude interaction online.

Stein called Ocasio-Cortez his “favorite big booty Latina,” and heckled her over her stance on abortion.

“She wants to kill babies but she’s still beautiful. You look very beautiful in that dress. You look very sexy. Look at that booty on AOC,” he shouted to Ocasio-Cortez. “Look how sexy she looks in that dress. Oooh, I love it AOC. Hot, hot, hot like a tamale.”

The comedian’s lawsuit cites a November 2019 federal appeals court decision that ruled against then-President Donald Trump, saying that blocking people from following him on Twitter had violated their constitutional rights.

The appeals court ruled that Trump was acting in an official presidential capacity when he blocked those individuals.

Shortly after that ruling, Ocasio-Cortez apologized and settled a case with Dov Hikind, a former Brooklyn assemblyman who sued her for blocking him on Twitter after he made critical replies to her tweets.

At the time, Ocasio-Cortez unblocked Hikind, saying he “has a First Amendment right to express his views and should not be blocked for them.”

Stein is seeking the same result with his lawsuit, which he filed with a U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.

“I really don’t have any hard feelings for AOC,” Stein said, noting that his suit does not seek any monetary damages.

“I really would like to have her unblock me,” he said.

“Mr. Stein has a constitutional right to access Ms. Cortez’s Twitter account as part of vigorous public comment and criticism,” the suit reads. “Ms. Cortez’s practice of blocking Twitter users she disagrees with is unconstitutional and this suit seeks to redress that wrong.”

But the appeals court decision that Stein’s lawsuit cites was actually overturned in 2021. The U.S. Supreme Court erased the appeals court’s ruling, and dismissed the case as moot because Trump was a private citizen by then. The Supreme Court’s order means that the earlier court’s ruling can no longer be used as a precedent for similar cases.

Additionally, in Stein’s case, he was blocked by Ocasio-Cortez for remarks made in-person, rather than online.

Source: CNBC

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