Court may reject ban on campaign lies
WASHINGTON - Can a state make it illegal for politicians to lie about each other? The Supreme Court doesn't seem to think so.
Justices today were highly skeptical about an Ohio law that makes it illegal to recklessly make false statements about candidates seeking elective office.
Critics of the law say free speech means wide-open debate during campaigns -- including protection for negative speech that may sometimes twist the facts.
During oral arguments today, justices said even the prospect of being hauled in front of state officials to explain comments made in the heat of a campaign would have a chilling effect on speech.