Heck Responds to Supreme Court Ruling in Stolen Valor Case

Jun 28, 2012 Issues: Defense and National Security, Veterans

WASHINGTON - Congressman Joe Heck (NV-03) today released the following statement after the Supreme Court of the United States ruled a federal law passed in 2006 which made it a crime to lie about one's military record or awards unconstitutional. The Supreme Court ruled that such fabrication of military service or awards is free speech protected by the Constitution.

"While originally very popular, the 2006 law went too far in that it attempted to limit individuals' speech. My bill takes a different approach – making it illegal for individuals to benefit from lying about their military service or record. As a colonel in the US Army Reserve, I feel strongly about protecting the honor of our service men and women, and the Stolen Valor Act of 2011 will help do that.

"Now that the Supreme Court has laid down this marker, I will be pushing for a vote on a version of the Stolen Valor Act that will pass constitutional scrutiny."

Background:

In May of 2011, Congressman Heck introduced H.R. 1775, the Stolen Valor Act of 2011, which would make it illegal for individuals to benefit from lying about their military service, record, or awards. It is likely that this bill would pass constitutional review on the grounds that it does not attempt to limit speech. Rep. Heck's bill has 52 bipartisan co-sponsors. Senator Scott Brown (MA) has introduced the Senate companion bill, S. 1782.

To read the full text of the bill, click here.

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