An Indiana law that bans registered sex offenders from using Facebook and other social networking sites that can be accessed by children is unconstitutional, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.
The 7th U.S. Circuit of Appeals in Chicago overturned a federal judge’s decision upholding the law, saying the state was justified in trying to protect children but that the “blanket ban” went too far by restricting free speech.
The 2008 law “broadly prohibits substantial protected speech rather than specifically targeting the evil of improper communications to minors,” the judges wrote.
Indiana’s new governor will be sworn in Monday at the statehouse in Indianapolis.
Republican Mike Pence will become Indiana’s 50th governor during an 11 a.m. ceremony, taking the oath of office along with Lt. Gov.-elect Sue Ellspermann and Attorney General Greg Zoeller.
Pence spokeswoman Christy Denault says the new governor will deliver his inaugural address and then get right to work.
"At 11:53 we expect to conclude, turn around and walk through those doors, and then Gov. Pence will walk straight to his office and we have some order of business to begin immediately, says Denault. "He’ll be signing executive orders that day, first day executive orders."
Pence will deliver his State of the State address to the Indiana General Assembly on January 22.
Outgoing governor Mitch Daniels will report for duty Tuesday as the new president of Purdue University.
Despite the fact Republicans control the Indiana Governor’s mansion, House, and Senate, a standoff appears to be brewing over Governor-Elect Mike Pence’s plans to cut income taxes. Pence takes office January 14th, and is admitting he has no budget experience at the state level.
However, Pence is a conservative Republican and a veteran of some bruising federal budget battles over his eleven years in the U.S. House. The Columbus, Indiana native has promised that pushing a 10% income tax cut will be his top legislative priority next year.