The man who was all too eager to protect school board officials from “terrorist” parents by ordering the FBI to investigate them had to be dragged kicking and screaming to do his job and send U.S. Marshals to protect the private homes of Supreme Court justices.
Attorney General Merrick Garland “directed the U.S. Marshals Service to help ensure the Justices’ safety by providing additional support to the Marshal of the Supreme Court and Supreme Court Police,” the DOJ said.
The AG’s reluctant assistance came after a huge outcry from Republicans in Congress who were concerned that protesters violated the law by demonstrating in front of the homes of Justices Roberts, Kavanaugh, and Alito following the leak of the draft opinion rescinding abortion protections in Roe v Wade.
Republican Governors Larry Hogan of Maryland and Glen Youngkin of Virginia wrote a letter to Garland reminding him of his duty to enforce the law.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan and Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland on Wednesday citing federal law that bars picketing and parading near a judge’s home “with the intent of influencing any judge.”
“While protesting a final opinion from the Supreme Court is commonplace when done on the steps of the court or in the public square, the circumstances of the current picketing at the Justices’ private homes in residential neighborhoods are markedly different,” the Republican governors wrote.
The added layer of security is necessary after White House press secretary Jen Psaki issued a statement in Biden’s name that did not condemn the violation of the law against demonstrating in front of the homes of federal judges and, in fact, encouraged it.
“I know that there’s an outrage right now, I guess, about protests that have been peaceful to date, and we certainly do continue to encourage that, outside judges’ homes, and that’s the president’s position.”
The best interpretation of this astonishing assertion is that Biden wants people who choose to protest outside the homes of Supreme Court justices to remain peaceful, but is not recommending that they conduct such protests.
The Senate recently passed legislation that will boost security for the court and its members but the House has yet to take up the measure. In fact, the House inserted a “poison pill” into the legislation that will make it more difficult to vote for.
The Senate passed an emergency, bipartisan bill to beef up security for the justices and the Supreme Court building, sending it to the House on Monday night. Democrats in the House, however, don’t appear to be eager to get the bill passed into law. Leadership members said on Wednesday they haven’t even read the legislation, which is a single page, and they are now considering a new bill with an added provision that extends the security to the Court’s 40-odd clerks—a provision sure to turn off Republicans.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D., N.Y.) said Tuesday that Democrats are “certainly going to look” at the bill, but declined to provide a timeline on when to expect a vote. House Democratic Caucus chairman Hakeem Jeffries (D., N.Y.) told reporters on Tuesday that he has not even read the single-page Senate bill.
If that’s not an invitation to protesters to harass and threaten the justices in their homes, nothing is.