The Honorable Arlen Specter
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510
Dear Senator Specter:
As an organization committed to upholding the Freedom of Speech enshrined in the Constitution, the Anti-Defamation League welcomes your leadership in introducing the Free Speech Protection Act of 2008, legislation which would prevent US courts from enforcing foreign libel judgments against Americans in violation of the First Amendment.
The right of free expression is under attack around the world by those who wish to stifle it in the name of opposing “defamation.” The practice of suing Americans for allegedly “defamatory” speech in foreign courts is another disturbing manifestation of this trend. Enactment of this legislation is necessary to ensure protections of Americans’ broad free speech rights under the Constitution and we hope the Senate will be able to pass it before Congress adjourns.
The degree to which speech is protected under US law is unique and Congress should be vigilant in ensuring that all Americans can freely promote public discourse and debate without fear of US courts enforcing judgments of foreign courts against constitutionally-protected speech.
Abraham H. Foxman
cc: Jess N. Hordes, ADL Washington Director