Rep. Lynn Woolsey is the member of Congress reportedly responsible for giving Cindy Sheehan access to the State of the Union address last night. When it comes to whether she knew Sheehan would pull the stunt she pulled, Woolsey has absolutely no plausible deniability. She is one of disruptive guerilla group Code Pink’s biggest advocates.
Recall that Code Pink obtained 16 tickets–reportedly from unidentified members of Congress from New York and California– to last year’s inaugural address, which they interrupted repeatedly with their screams and banner-unfurling antics.
Woolsey should be ashamed of sponsoring Sheehan’s attempt to turn a historic, ceremonial event in American history into a cheap moonbat spectacle. Did she also supply tickets to Code Pink protesters last year?
If there are House rules governing such ticket privileges for members of Congress, they ought to be enforced and Rep. Woolsey’s privileges should be revoked.
Mark in Mexico parses Cindy Sheehan’s disingenuous diatribe about last night’s stunt.
TITLE 40 – PUBLIC BUILDINGS, PROPERTY, AND WORKS
SUBTITLE II – PUBLIC BUILDINGS AND WORKS
PART B – UNITED STATES CAPITOL
CHAPTER 51 – UNITED STATES CAPITOL BUILDINGS AND GROUNDS
Sec. 5104. Unlawful activities
(2) Violent entry and disorderly conduct. – An individual or group of individuals may not willfully and knowingly –
(C) with the intent to disrupt the orderly conduct of official business, enter or remain in a room in any of the Capitol Buildings set aside or designated for the use of either House of Congress or a Member, committee, officer, or employee of Congress or either House of Congress;
(D) utter loud, threatening, or abusive language, or engage in disorderly or disruptive conduct, at any place in the Grounds or in any of the Capitol Buildings with the intent to impede, disrupt, or disturb the orderly conduct of a session of Congress or either House of Congress, or the orderly conduct in that building of a hearing before, or any deliberations of, a committee of Congress or either House of Congress;
(G) parade, demonstrate, or picket in any of the Capitol Buildings.
Note also, that displays are covered in some more detail with this language later:
(2) display in the Grounds a flag, banner, or device designed or adapted to bring into public notice a party, organization, or movement.
Tammy Bruce issues a Malignant Narcissist Alrt.
And another commenter at Balloon Juice sets the heavy-breathing Left straight:
As if anybody here cares, the time manner place restrictions on free speech in legislative halls is frequently described as a limited forum or limited purpose forum. I can’t recall which one it is off hand, but based on the number of First Amendment experts posting around here I’m sure somebody has the answer at their fingertips. Legislatures generally have the ability to limit the topics of discussion and debate on the floor and in the gallery of their meeting places. If your local school board wants to discuss textbooks, they can expressly discriminate against you for attempting to voice your anti-abortion or pro-choice message – they can even tell you to shut up before you try to voice it, and have you removed for being a disorderly presence. They can greatly constrict your ability to speak out, usually in the interest of the smooth operation of government. The rationale works across government branches. Speech is speech is speech; doesn’t matter if it’s speech on a T-shirt, a poster board, or coming out of your mouth. If the legislature has the power to exclude in this arena based on viewpoint, it also has the power to include, determining at its discretion what is a permissible topic or manner of speech, such as tiny little flags, or elephant ties. Moreover, the fact that two people with opposing views were ejected for the same activity – mere wearing of communicative T-shirts speaking out on the war – indicates a viewpoint neutrality that might even pass muster outside of the limited forum tests as non-viewpoint discriminatory, but merely restrictive of speech on a particular topic.
So I’ll defend to the death your right to grow your white boy dreadlocks and march around in sloganed T-shirts and with signs on the Capitol steps, but your right to do that ends at the Capitol’s front door. Or the Supreme Court’s front door, for that matter…
Capitol Police dropped a charge of unlawful conduct against antiwar activist Cindy Sheehan on Wednesday and apologized for ejecting her and a congressman’s wife from President Bush’s State of the Union address for wearing T-shirts with war messages.
“The officers made a good faith, but mistaken effort to enforce an old unwritten interpretation of the prohibitions about demonstrating in the Capitol,” Capitol Police Chief Terrance Gainer said in a statement late Wednesday…
…The two women appeared to have offended tradition if not the law, according to several law enforcement and congressional officials. By custom, the annual address is to be a dignified affair in which the president reports on the state of the nation. Guests in the gallery who wear shirts deemed political in nature have, in past years, been asked to change or cover them up.
Rules dealing mainly with what people can bring and telling them to refrain from reading, writing, smoking, eating, drinking, applauding or taking photographs are outlined on the back of gallery passes given to tourists every day.
However, State of the Union guests don’t receive any guidelines, according to Deputy House Sergeant at Arms Kerri Hanley. “You would assume that if you were coming to an event like the State of the Union address you would be dressed in appropriate attire,” she said.
If you believe Sheehan wouldn’t have attempted to disrupt the speech had she not been removed, I have a bridge to sell you.
Dems gave Code Pink disrupters tickets