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The Pennsylvania Constitution does not guarantee access to private property for the exercise of such rights as free speech and petition where the owner uniformly and effectively prohibits all political activities and similarly precludes the use of its property as a forum for discussion of matters of public controversy.
Appellants, political party and party members, attempted to conduct political activities at a mall owned by appellee mall owner. Appellee refused to let them do so, and appellants brought suit for an injunction requiring appellee to permit such activities. The trial court entered judgment for appellee, and the appellate court affirmed. Appellants sought review of the decision.
Did the Pennsylvania Constitution give appellants the right to conduct political activities in privately-owned shopping malls, notwithstanding the owner’s prohibition?
The court affirmed the judgment of the appellate court. The court expressed its belief that the Pennsylvania Constitution did not guarantee access to private property for the exercise of such rights as appellants wished to exercise where the owner uniformly and effectively prohibited all political activities and similarly precluded the use of its property as a forum for discussion of matters of public controversy.