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AGs petitioned to suppress Wal-Mart issue ads



False-advertising laws were originally aimed at preventing the fraudulent misrepresentation of goods for sale, but now they're just another legal weapon for groups that would like to prevent businesses under attack from speaking out on their own behalf in public debate. Latest case in point: an anti-Wal-Mart group is petitioning the attorneys general of Arizona and Nebraska to outlaw television ads the giant retailer is running in those states which defend its role in the economy by citing a study which found that "Wal-Mart saves the average working family $2300 per year." The New York Sun covers the controversy in an editorial, and concludes:

In the marketplace of ideas, Wal-Mart has as much right to present its side of the story to the public as the unions do, and people can take or leave any "fact" they want. It would be a perversion of commercial speech laws, let alone the First Amendment, to abridge Wal-Mart's rights just because some unions don't like what the company is saying.

 

 


Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy
rmangual@manhattan-institute.org

Katherine Lazarski
Manhattan Institute
klazarski@manhattan-institute.org

 

Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.