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What is 'petitioning'?
 
What are the origins of the right to petition?
 
What does the petition clause in the First Amendment guarantee?
 
Can government entities besides Congress restrict petitioning?
 
What must the government do in response to petitioning?
 
Are SLAPP suits illegal?
 
Is lobbying considered a form of petition?
 

Lobbyists try to persuade government officials either to support or oppose various policy issues. Therefore, lobbying can be considered a form of petitioning the government for redress of grievances, subject to protection under the First Amendment’s petition clause. Although there has not been a great deal of judicial analysis on First Amendment protections afforded to lobbying, the courts have carved out several parameters. First, the petition clause does not grant a lobbyist the absolute right to speak to a government official nor does it grant a lobbyist the right to a hearing based on his or her grievances. In addition, the clause does not create an obligation for a government official to take action in response to a grievance. Finally, any statement made while a lobbyist petitions a government official does not receive greater protection than any other expression protected by the First Amendment.

 
 
Do anti-SLAPP laws apply to online libel suits?
 
Do prisoners have access to law libraries and legal advisers as part of the freedom to petition?
 
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Last system update: Friday, November 14, 2008 | 00:01:55
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