Monday, March 29, 2004

Take That, Free Speech Zones!

A Chicago immigrant advocacy group stormed Karl Rove's home yesterday in Washington's Northwest quadrant, causing Bush's Brain to seriously lose his cool.

The group, National People's Action, had earlier requested a meeting at the White House with Rove to lobby for the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors [DREAM] Act, "a bill that would permit immigrants who have lived in the United States for at least five years to apply for legal resident status once they graduate from high school. The measure would eliminate provisions of current federal law that discourage states from providing in-state tuition to undocumented student immigrants." (Washington Post story here.)

When Rove dissed 'em for a meeting, they drove several hundred people on buses into his neighborhood, tromped his lawn, knocked on his door, and shoved signs up against his windows. The crowd chanted, "Karl, Karl, come on out! See what the DREAM Act is all about!"

Rove opened his front door and told them to get off his property. In response, they started chanting "Karl Rove ain't got no soul!"

"The crowd then grew more aggressive, fanning around the three accessible sides of Rove's house, tracking him through the many windows, waving signs that read 'Say Yes to DREAM' and pounding on the glass. At one point, Rove rushed to a window, pointed a finger and yelled something inaudible." Didn't say which finger he pointed.

Cops and Secret Service began arriving. The protestors held their ground. Rove opened his front door again, long enough to speak with an officer. The crowd pelted him with a yelled version of "America the Beautiful." After 30 minutes of stalemate, with the protestors taunting Rove in English and Spanish, the president's special assistant finally agreed to talk to two leaders of the group if the rest would leave the street. They obliged, and Rove opened his garage door to Emira Palacios and Inez Killingsworth. "The meeting lasted two minutes and ended with Rove closing the garage door on Palacios while she was still talking."

Palacios said that Rove was "very upset" and was "yelling in our faces" and that Rove told them "he hoped we were proud to make his 14-year-old and 10-year-old cry." Which was a half-lie, since it later turned out that one of the children was a neighbor.

"Palacios, trembling and in tears herself, said, 'He is very offended because we dared to come here. We dared to come here because he dared to ignore us. I'm sorry we disturbed his children, but our children are disturbed every day.' "


"He also said, 'Don't ever dare to come back,' Palacios said. 'We will, if he continues to ignore us.' "

It's gettin' militant out there!

But what I want to know, as a devoted fan of The West Wing, is why Rove wasn't hard at work at the White House of a Sunday afternoon. It's NOT as though the man shouldn't be laboring long hours on how to massage his boss's tattered image as The Just and Moral Warrior Against Terrorism.

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