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ACLU Files Suit Against Secret ServiceTuesday, September 23, 2003WASHINGTON â€” The American Civil Liberties Union (search) asked the federal courts Tuesday to prevent the U.S. Secret Service (search) from keeping anti-Bush protesters far away from presidential appearances while allowing supporters to display their messages up close.The civil liberties group filed the lawsuit in federal court in Pennsylvania on behalf of four advocacy organizations that claimed that the Secret Service forced them into protest zones (search) or other areas where they could not be seen by President Bush or Vice President Dick Cheney or be noticed by the media covering their visits."The pattern we found was at presidential and vice presidential appearances, protesters were restricted to areas where they were out of sight, out of earshot and often out of mind," said Witold J. Walczak, legal director for the ACLU's Greater Pittsburgh chapter."Protecting our nation's leaders from harm is important. Protecting our nation's leaders from dissent is unconstitutional."Said Secret Service spokesman John Gill: "The Secret Service does not comment on pending litigation. However, we have a long-standing policy of recognizing the constitutionally-protected right of the public to demonstrate and voice their views to their elected officials."The ACLU complaint lists several incidents where protesters were forced to assemble blocks away from where the president or vice president was speaking, while supporters of the administration's policy could hold their signs up in front of the building. They cited examples across the country, including Philadelphia; Columbia, S.C.; Phoenix; Stockton, Calif.; and St. Louis.The plaintiffs are the National Organization for Women (search); United for Peace and Justice (search), an anti-war group; ACORN (search), an advocacy organization for low and moderate-income families; and USAction (search), an advocacy group that supports universal health care and better public education and opposes the Iraq war and Bush's tax cuts.
Just a friendly reminder that there are other constitutional rights out there besides the 2nd amendment.[ 09-23-2003: Message edited by: LongTimeFan ]
Just more evidence that everything ole George does is a photo op. There is no security justification for segregating pro and anti demonstration groups, since any real threat would catch on quick and just pose as a Bush supporter.George should stick to aircraft carriers,defense plants and the oil patch where the crowd is all on the payroll. Then he wouldn't have this problem.
Randy, a lot of these protesters are violent, and would not hesitate to confront and attack the President if given the chance. Remember the degenerates in Monument Square? What do you think they would do if President Bush came walking down the street? I rest my case.
Hey TonyO, I hear the National Enquirer is looking for headline authors.