McKenna on KIRO: 3D-printed guns and free speech

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about the current court fight over releasing plans for 3D-printed guns. State Attorney General Bob Ferguson and 18 other states filed suit against the Trump Administration over the planned release. A federal judge in Seattle issued a temporary restraining order against the release of the plans.

Dave Ross: “On the legality of this, is there a clear-cut free speech case for Cody Wilson, who posted these plans on the internet?”

Rob McKenna: “No there isn’t. I don’t think that Wilson has a particularly strong First Amendment claim here. He’s engaged in commercial activity, which receives a lower level of protection than political speech. That doesn’t mean it’s completely unprotected, there is protection for commercial speech.

“But there are all kinds of regulations that limit it and, in this case, under federal laws – like laws controlling exports and laws controlling munitions. So I think that the federal government had a pretty good argument.

“Having said that, they chose to settle the case, which may signal that they thought they might lose if the case went up.”

Listen here

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