Should it be illegal for Colorado’s elected officials to block someone on social media? This lawsuit may provide a definitive answer.

The Colorado Sun: Can the people we choose to lead us block or censor constituents on social media? It’s a question leading to increasing conflicts in Colorado between citizens and their elected officials in all levels of government.

The legal answer is one that remains mostly unanswered in the state, despite several high-profile lawsuits that have ended settlements costing taxpayers thousands of dollars and required lawmakers to promise they will no longer block people.

But the ACLU of Colorado is seeking to provide clarity once and for all, using a lawsuit filed Monday against Republican state Sen. Ray Scott, of Grand Junction. Scott is accused of blocking a constituent on Twitter and Facebook, but the federal lawsuit doesn’t ask for monetary damages, just a resolution to an issue that’s been popping up in courts around the country.

“We’ve had requests from people about local government officials, as well as more statewide officials, where they’ve been blocked,” said Sara Neel, a staff attorney with the ACLU who is bringing the case against Scott. “Even public school districts and sheriff’s offices have blocked and/or censored folks on their social media pages.”

“It is happening,” Neel said, “and we need a court to say this can’t happen.”

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