The Denver Three

November 21, 2005

I hadn’t heard of "the Denver Three" prior to reading this piece by Steve Benen, but if the description is accurate I hope that they get some answers:

In March, Denver residents Alex Young, Karen Bauer, and Leslie Weise obtained tickets from their Republican congressman to a public town hall meeting on the president’s Social Security plan. Someone working at the event noticed an anti-war bumper sticker ("No Blood For Oil") on their car, which prompted staffers to forcibly remove the three from the presidential event, despite the fact that they hadn’t done anything wrong.

I certainly hope that Bush and his staff do not have a policy of ejecting people from public events like this. I understand in a general sense the concerns that might lead to such actions (any president tends to attract people who want to create a disturbance for the heck of it, and Bush seems to attract more of these characters than most), but it is clearly illegitimate to restrict the access of people who have given no indication that they will cause trouble, especially when the event is meant to be a "public town hall" meeting where the whole idea is free debate.

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