The Supreme Court on Monday appeared deeply skeptical of arguments by two conservative states that the First Amendment bars the government from pressuring social media platforms to remove online misinformation.

In more than 90 minutes of oral arguments that occasionally veered into the justices’ personal frustrations with the press, several conservative justices sided with the liberal wing in appearing to doubt claims by two states that the Biden administration violated the Constitution with the practice.

Louisiana and Missouri accused the Biden administration of a sweeping censorship campaign conducted through emailed and other communications with social media platforms.

In the communications, government officials routinely used expletives and other strong language to flag posts related to Covid-19 and the 2020 election that they believed violated the platforms’ terms, and demanded the posts be removed. In some cases, platforms complied with the takedown requests. Others were ignored.

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