Knopp bounces critics from his social media feed



Rep. Gary Knopp will be featured at a special Kenai/Soldotna Chamber of Commerce breakfast on Friday, Feb. 15, and a Town Hall later that evening.

He posted the event on his Facebook page, only to have a couple of criticisms pop up in response.

Ray and Jenny Chumley responded to Knopp that they hope he’ll resign during the town hall meeting. But their comment only appeared for a while before it was removed, presumably by Knopp, but certainly not by them, Must Read Alaska has learned.

The posting, linked below, has been sanitized of a second critical comment as well:


The “curbing of critics” may be an abridgment of the First Amendment right to free speech because Knopp’s Facebook page represents him as an official of the government, not as a private citizen.

In January, federal appeals court said a Virginia politician violated the Constitution by temporarily blocking a critic from her Facebook page, in the same manner that former Alaska Rep. Les Gara was so fond of doing when he was in office, and in a similar way to the censoring that Knopp is doing now.

In an unanimous decision, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said that the chair of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors violated the free speech rights of Brian Davison by banning him for 12 hours from her official “Chair Phyllis J. Randall” page.

While Knopp didn’t ban the Chumleys, either he or his official government staff did remove their suggestion that Knopp step down from office.

Political speech “occupies the core of the protection afforded by the First Amendment,” wrote the Virginia-based appeals court in the decision that affirmed an earlier ruling by U.S. District Judge James Cacheris in Alexandria, Virginia.

The Virginia case was the first of its kind in a federal appeals court, but could be used in other courts as precedent.

President Donald Trump asked the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to flip a a District judge’s ruling that said he could not block Twitter critics from his @RealDonaldTrump Twitter account.


  1. It’s blatantly immoral for court to say we can’t block people on FB or any other social media. That’s like being forced to answer the door if they won’t stop knocking, or maybe having to leave the door open while they yell insults. Knopp deserves all the hard times he gets, but he should be able to ban who he wants.

    • Believe it or not, humans do not reside in facebook. It’s not like a person on your property knocking on your door at all, as in not even a little teensy tiny bit. One is private property, the other is owned by Mark Zuckerberg and shareholders, two completely and entirely different things.

    • A little libertarian dogma is a dangerous thing. If the FB page or any other online presence represents his public office, it is the voice of the government and he cannot restrain private speech on that page. There is a gray area in which you may be enough of a public figure that you identity is inseparable from your governmental office, in which case even your purely personal online presence isn’t really a private act, but that involves a factual determination as to whether you are a public figure.

  2. If you’re on facebook, search for Representative Gary Knopp and go to his page and comment – simply say ‘Recall time!’ Show him how people really feel.

  3. So proud to be an Alaskan with a politician that is willing to put his totality on the line for Alaskans & the Democratic process that we are willing to die; to defend & uphold. To shoulder the load and carry on with stalwart conviction, & receive such posts, is testament to the nature of current politics. To delete them would be a ‘knee jerk’ reaction for many of us under ‘normal’ circumstances. So is this worth a brave man being taken apart, in order to discredit him and sabotage his quest to form a balanced legislative body, to govern out great land..? If so, then we have a problem that desperately transcends the snippet that brings forth this trivial point . Dissect the problem, heal the wound, move on with the peoples’ business. Hang Tough for us Representative Knopp !The patriots understand.

    • You gotta be kidding me, Jonathan. If he ran as a Democrat and then joined a Republican minority with the sole intent to thwart the Democrats from controlling the House, you’ld be singing a different tune. Knopp is a traitor, disloyal to his constituency, and a bald faced liar. Simple as that. Democracy is great when your side wins, or at least prevents the other side from winning. btw, my name is copy written here at MRAK. Just a friendly warning.

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