(EnviroNews USA Headline News Desk) — Washington D.C. — After Press Secretary Sean Spicer lied about the size of Trump’s inauguration crowds and chastised the media for reporting them accurately, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) tweeted:
It is shameful that on the first full day of this Administration, we have obvious expressions of possible government censorship. Our nation was quite literally founded on the principles of a free press and any effort by the Trump Administration to curtail them will be met with vigorous defense of the first amendment by the ACLU and others. This will be a fight the Trump Administration will most certainly lose. If Trump wants to take on the First Amendment, we’ll see him in court.
The remarks by President Trump's press secretary ring of McCarthyism and will lead to losing legal battles. Our response below. pic.twitter.com/G4Nt6k4XeQ
— ACLU National (@ACLU) January 22, 2017
This exchange comes just days after a senior Trump official called the Press Corps the “opposition party” and proposed removing it from the White House. Spicer stated this was being discussed in part due to concerns over adequate room in the current press area.
On January 22, Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway told NBC’s Meet the Press that Spicer had used “alternative facts” when lying to the press about the size of the inauguration.
The ACLU has been vigorously preparing to carry out its century-old mission “to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States,” under the Trump Administration. In July 2016, it published the Trump Memos, a constitutional analysis of Trump’s public statements and policy proposals, and on January 19, 2017, it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for documents relating to Trump’s potential or actual familial and economic conflicts of interest.