The Democratic Virginia official who refused to boost security outside the homes of U.S. Supreme Court justices amid pro-abortion protests last week turned around and ordered police protection around his own home shortly after, the Washington Free Beacon reported on Friday.
Citing sources, the news outlet claimed that Jeff McKay, who serves as chairman of Fairfax County’s Board of Supervisors, ordered patrol officers to stand guard outside his home for a week after the protests after he allegedly received threats.
McKay’s decision to order protection around his own home stands in stark contrast to his refusal to grant Republican Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s request to block protests around the justices’ homes last week.
Hundreds of pro-abortion activists descended on the homes of conservative justices earlier this month following the leaked draft opinion showing that a majority of the bench had decided to overturn Roe v. Wade, a decision that would end the federal right to an abortion.
The angry protesters shouted and waved signs near the homes of Justices Brett Kavanaugh and John Roberts in Montgomery County, Maryland, as well as the homes of Samuel Alito and Amy Coney Barrett in Fairfax County, Virginia.
But McKay did nothing to prevent the picketing and protesting despite the fact that such activity appears to be considered illegal under both Virginia and U.S. law. In a Washington Post op-ed, the chairman said he opted against setting up a security perimeter outsides the justices’ homes because the Virginia law that prohibits “picketing” a “residence or dwelling place” would “not hold up in court and is likely unconstitutional.”
He added that the U.S. law that prohibits protesting with the intent to sway a judicial decision should be enforced by federal authorities and argued in a letter that setting up a security perimeter would violate neighborhood residents’ Fourth Amendment rights and protesters’ First Amendment rights.
However, such careful thought didn’t seem to influence his decision to order police protection outside his own home shortly thereafter. In response to questioning from the Free Beacon, a McKay spokesman said only that he “has full faith in the professionals of the [Fairfax County Police Department] to carry out their mission of ensuring public safety and protecting people’s constitutional rights.”
The Justice Department’s U.S. Marshals Service has since “accelerated the provision of around-the-clock security at the homes of all Justices” upon request from Youngkin and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R).