Friday, April 29, 2005

Only Bush Gets Free Speech

The Secret Service is investigating a man on possible criminal charges of impersonating a Secret Service agent after three people were forcibly removed from a presidential speech in Denver on March 21.

Bush's Social Security speech at the Wings over the Rockies Museum was an official White House event funded by the taxpayers. It was open to any member of the public who obtained a ticket.

The controversy started when Alex Young, Karen Bauer and Leslie Weise, members of the political activist group Denver Progressives, were bounced from the event by a man who looked and acted like a Secret Service agent.

The three say they were told by the Secret Service in Denver that the man admitted to ousting them solely because they arrived in a car bearing a "No more blood for oil" bumper sticker.

He was wearing a dark suit, earpiece and lapel pin. The White House and the Secret Service know the man's name but have declined to reveal it. The White House has described him only as a volunteer.

Meanwhile, Lon Garner, the Secret Service agent in charge in Denver, said he never told the three that the man was "a Republican Party staffer."

On Tuesday, Jay Bob Klinkerman, chairman of the Colorado Young Republicans, was identified by Bauer as one of three people involved in stopping her and Weise at the gate. The two women say that Klinkerman told them they were waiting for the Secret Service, and then the apparent agent appeared.


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