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Missouri Supreme Court weighs publicly funded advocacy ban

Missouri Supreme Court judges have heard arguments over whether a ban on publicly funded advocacy is constitutional. Arguments in the case were held Tuesday.

Missouri law prohibits any public funds from being spent to advocate for or against ballot measures. For example, spending money to print flyers in favor of a bonding proposal. Several Missouri cities sued in 2019. They argue that the law is too vague and limits freedom of speech. The Missouri Attorney General's Office is defending the law.

Deputy Solicitor General Michael Talent says government speech isn't protected by the First Amendment, so the law is valid.

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