- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 10, 2022

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday that President Biden supports peaceful protests outside the homes of Supreme Court justices.

“I know there’s an outrage right now, I guess, about protests that have been peaceful to date. And we certainly continue to encourage that outside of judges’ homes and that’s the president’s position,” Ms. Psaki said at the White House press briefing.

Her comments mark a shift in the administration’s attitude. Last week, Ms. Psaki said she didn’t have “an official U.S. government position” on where people protest.

“Certainly the president would want people’s privacy to be respected,” she said at the time.

Ms. Psaki emphasized that the president supports “peaceful” protests, saying “violence, threats and intimidation of any kind have no place in political discourse.” She noted that so far, the gatherings in front of the justices’ homes have been peaceful.

Abortion groups, including ShutDownDC, have organized protests outside the homes of three conservative Supreme Court justices, and more are expected to follow. Over the weekend, about 100 protesters demonstrated outside the homes of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh.

On Monday, protestors supporting abortion access marched and chanted in front of the home of Justice Samuel A. Alito, who authored a draft opinion that would strike down Roe v. Wade. The draft was leaked last week.

“F—- the court and the legislators, we are not your incubators!” one chant went. In another, the approximately 100 protesters shouted, “Alito says post-Roe, we say hell no!”

The protests have drawn both support and rebuke from those on the left. Ms. Psaki suggested that those complaining about the protests were being hypocritical, accusing them of ignoring threats and harassment aimed at school board officials across the country over mask mandates and school curriculums.

“What I do find interesting, and I think that many people have noted, is that there are voices on the right that have called out this — protests — happening while remaining silent for years on protests that have happened outside the homes of school board members, the Michigan Secretary of State or including threats made to women seeking reproductive healthcare or even an insurrection against our capitol,” she said.

 In a Monday editorial, the Washington Post editorial board said justices’ homes should be off-limits, calling the protests “problematic.”

“What they mainly succeeded in doing was to illustrate that their goal — with which we broadly agree — does not justify their tactics,” the Post’s editorial board wrote.

— Ramsey Touchberry contributed to this article 

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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