Another 5-4 decision. And another reason to make sure that Bush loses in November. http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=stor...tus_online_porn WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a law meant to punish pornographers who peddle dirty pictures to Web-surfing kids is probably an unconstitutional muzzle on free speech. The high court divided 5-to-4 over a law passed in 1998, signed by then-President Clinton (news - web sites) and now backed by the Bush administration. The majority said a lower court was correct to block the law from taking effect because it likely violates the First Amendment. The court did not end the long fight over the law, however. The majority sent the case back to a lower court for a trial that could give the government a chance to prove the law does not go too far. The majority, led by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, said there may have been important technological advances in the five years since a federal judge blocked the law. Holding a new trial will allow discussion of what technology, if any, might allow adults to see and buy material that is legal for them while keeping that material out of the hands of children. Justices John Paul Stevens (news - web sites), David H. Souter, Clarence Thomas (news - web sites) and Ruth Bader Ginsburg (news - web sites) agreed with Kennedy. The American Civil Liberties Union (news - web sites) and other critics of the antipornography law said that it would restrict far too much material that adults may legally see and buy, the court said. The law, which never took effect, would have authorized fines up to $50,000 for the crime of placing material that is "harmful to minors" within the easy reach of children on the Internet (news - web sites). The law also would have required adults to use access codes and or other ways of registering before they could see objectionable material online. For now, the law, known as the Child Online Protection Act, would sweep with too broad a brush, Kennedy wrote. "There is a potential for extraordinary harm and a serious chill upon protected speech" if the law took effect, he wrote. Kennedy said that filtering software "is not a perfect solution to the problem of children gaining access to harmful-to-minors materials." He said that so far, the government has failed to prove that other technologies would work better.