PENt-Up: The PEN Transition Update


“The reign of terror that the snakes @nytimes @washingtonpost @CNN @MSNBC @ABCPolitics @NBCNews @CBS had over our politics is over. Killed it.”

—Sheriff David Clarke, under consideration for U.S. Homeland Security Secretary

pentup_darePENt-Up: the PEN Transition Update, is our effort to track, analyze, and share important expression-related updates as our nation undergoes transformation into an America we all hope to still recognize. With so much in flux, it’s important to keep our eyes peeled and pens poised to ensure that our freedoms survive this transition intact.

PENt-up is a project of PEN America’s #LouderTogether campaign. If you come across a notable development that belongs
on this page, drop us a line at, and tweet us with #PENtup.

Read more on what the President-elect and his potential appointees have said about free expression »

Featured Updates

Louder Together

Dear Supporter,  The plain meaning of words is denied. The truth is malleable. Constitutional principles are denigrated. Journalists are impugned, smeared, and assaulted. Societal groups are vilified and threatened. Hate… More

Free Expression Report Card


Ben Carson
HUD Secretary designate Ben Carson shows proclivity toward applying political litmus tests for government workers and grant recipients, and has many other worrying views on free speech and free expression.
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pentup_jeff_sessionsJeff Sessions
President-elect Trump has previously indicated that that he may order his Attorney General to investigate members of the Black Lives Matter movement for speech that he believed was criminal. So where does a potential Attorney General Sessions stand on free speech?
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pentup_mitt_romneyMitt Romney
The former Republican presidential nominee is in the running to be Secretary of State. His positions show a mixed record on free expression.
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pentup_laura_ingrahamLaura Ingraham
According to Politico, she wants a “bigger title,” with a role in policymaking and a seat at the decision-making table with the president.
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pentup_rudy_giulianiRudy Giuliani
The former Mayor of New York City is being considered for both Secretary of State and Homeland Security Secretary. Noted First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams described Giuliani as “the single most consistent opponent of First Amendment rights in living memory.”
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