Portland, Ore. — On Monday, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a law prohibiting the recording of individuals without their explicit consent is unconstitutional, as it violates the First Amendment. The decision came after James O’Keefe, the former CEO of Project Veritas and Project Veritas Action Fund, filed a lawsuit in Portland, Oregon three years ago, arguing that the law in Oregon violates the US Constitution, particularly in the context of undercover investigative journalism.
The ruling specifically pertains to Oregon Revised Statute 165.540, which prohibits obtaining or attempting to obtain conversations, in whole or in part, through any device without the informed consent of all involved parties.
Circuit Judge Sandra S. Ikuta, from the Ninth Circuit in Pasadena, drafted the opinion, stating that Oregon lacks a compelling interest in protecting conversational privacy in public places from individuals exercising their right to free speech, even if it involves audio or visual recordings of others. Ikuta further explained that the law in Oregon amounts to a “content-based restriction” that violates the First Amendment, rendering it invalid on its face.
Regarding a prior decision by Judge Michael W. Mosman, O’Keefe shared that it was overturned and overruled.
“I knew this law was unconstitutional when my masterful free speech attorneys Barr, Klein, and I entered the Marc O. Hatfield courthouse in 2020 with heavy security under threat of violence. Journalism is alive and well in the state of Oregon; expect to see more of OMG in the Beaver State,” O’Keefe commented to The Post Millennial.