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“We can assure you that these beliefs are held by citizens of all races, party affiliations and sex, and should not be listed as a factor in determining potential terror threats. A better way to describe them is as citizens exercising their First Amendment rights,” the senators said.

The letter was signed by Sens. James M. Inhofe and Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, David Vitter of Louisiana, Sam Brownback of Kansas, Jim DeMint of South Carolina, Richard M. Burr of North Carolina, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

And in a measure of how much the conservative backlash against the Homeland Security Department’s assessment has grown, one of the nation’s most popular conservative talk-radio hosts Thursday filed a federal suit in Michigan against Ms. Napolitano over the report.

The lawsuit, which was filed on behalf of radio host Michael Savage, pro-life activist Gregg Cunningham and Iraq war veteran Kevin Murray, says the report “violates the civil liberties of combat veterans as well as American citizens by targeting them for disfavored treatment on account of the political beliefs” and attempting to chill their free speech and free association rights.

Mr. Savage’s show is produced and distributed by Talk Radio Network, which recently announced a deal to distribute and produce a new radio show by The Washington Times.