In this program, from 1974: “Miami Herald Publishing Company, appellant v. Pat Tornillo, appellee.” It’s about a Florida state law requiring newspapers to allow equal space in their newspapers to political candidates, in the case of a political editorial or endorsement.
This Saturday, July 7, C-SPAN Radio’s Supreme Court Historic Oral Arguments begins a month of elections issues cases.
Pat Tornillo was Executive Director of the Classroom Teachers Association and a candidate for the Florida House of Representatives in Dade County, Florida. The Miami Herald published two editorials criticizing Mr. Tornillo and his candidacy. He demanded that the Herald publish his responses to the editorials. When the Herald refused, Mr. Tornillo sued in Dade County Circuit Court under a Florida statute, which granted political candidates criticized by any newspaper the right to have their responses to the criticisms published. The Herald challenged the statute as a violation of the free press clause of the First Amendment. The Circuit Court ruled that the statute was unconstitutional. The Supreme Court of Florida reversed this decision and the case ended up in the U.S. Supreme Court.
The audio and information in this program are courtesy of the Oyez project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law at: http://www.oyez.org/