Wednesday, March 30, 2005

No dissent allowed in "conversations" with Bush.

Knight-Ridder reports today:

In Denver, three people say they were booted out of a presidential event last week even though they never uttered a peep, apparently because their car bore a bumper sticker denouncing the war in Iraq. "We welcome a diversity of views at the events," White House spokesman Scott McClellan said Tuesday, although in fact participants at the events are carefully screened and dissenting voices are rare. There was no welcome mat for Alex Young and his two companions when they showed up to see Bush on March 21 in Denver. Bush was there for one of a series of "conversations" about his plan to change Social Security.

Young and his friends, Karen Bauer and Leslie Weise, had barely gotten in the door before they were unceremoniously shown the exit by a man who refused to explain his actions. They thought he was a Secret Service agent because he had an earpiece and an official-looking lapel pin. In Denver, Young, a 25-year-old information-technology worker, acknowledges that he and his friends had initially intended to protest Bush's appearance. All wore "Stop the Lies" T-shirts under their outer clothing. They had planned to expose their shirts while shouting the slogan. "It was kind of juvenile. When we got inside, we decided not to do that," he said. White House spokesman McClellan said: "

My sense is that the volunteer felt that these individuals were coming to the event to disrupt it. If people are coming to the event to disrupt it, naturally they are going to be asked to leave." Yeah, but they didn't disrupt anything. And even if they did, "W" can't handle it? Remember back in the good old days when a real president like Bill Clinton could handle hecklers and not immediatly call out the national guard to arrest them for exersizing their right to free speech?

This isn't the first time this has happened, check out this blog back during the coventions.


Blogger bushmeister0 said...

Amy Goodman interviewed Alexander Young today about this issue at

"...the same individual who came and grabbed us from the audience and started pushing and shoving us out of the hall. (How had harrassed the two other people.)

AMY GOODMAN: On what grounds?

ALEXANDER YOUNG: He wouldn't say. We kept asking, “Why are you doing this? Who are you? Where are we going?” He wouldn’t answer any of those questions. This man was wearing a wire. He had one of those earpiece microphones on, and he had a lapel pin similar to a secret service agent, wearing a navy blue suit.

AMY GOODMAN: Now -- at the time, you definitely thought he was secret service.


AMY GOODMAN: What about now?

ALEXANDER YOUNG: Well, the secret service has informed us that he was not an agent, that he was in fact a host committee person. So we believe that that is in stark contrast to the White House's official description of him being a volunteer.


ALEXANDER YOUNG: Scott McClellan answered three questions about this about a week ago. He said that this person was a volunteer and that this was an anomalous event. We think that this event is quite like other events that have happened around the country, like in Fargo, North Dakota, and in Oregon, where people have been evicted because of political speech.

6:44 PM  
Blogger bushmeister0 said...

DENVER - A lawyer for three people removed from a President Bush town hall meeting — allegedly because of a "No More Blood for Oil" bumper sticker on their car — said Friday he is seeking the identity of the man who escorted the activists out, and plans to sue.

"We want to know who this person is, and who trained them, because we're going to sue" both the man and his trainers, said Dan Recht, a lawyer representing activists Alex Young, Karen Bauer and Leslie Weise.

10:11 PM  
Blogger bushmeister0 said...

The "denver Three" have ablog now.

1:38 PM  

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