Commentary: Federal Court Rules Against SUNY-Binghamton in Important Free Speech Challenge

Jonathan Turley

Excerpt: There is an interesting ruling this week out of New York where a federal court has ruled in favor of a conservative student group alleging that the State University of New York at Binghamton has engaged in a pattern of censorship of conservative speakers and events. What makes this lawsuit by the Young America’s Foundation particularly significant is the allegation that SUNY-Binghamton barred events by allowing protesters to shut them down. Lawrence Khan, a U.S. district judge denied SUNY Binghamton’s motion to dismiss.

In 2019, conservative organizations had hosted an event with economist Art Laffer. The event followed a familiar pattern. The university imposed a series of conditions on the sponsoring groups and threatened to shutdown the event if there were serious protests. It then did little to maintain order and promptly removed Laffer within minutes of the event when protesters disrupted the event.