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‘We must protect free speech, even when hateful’: ACLU backs Ann Coulter’s cancelled Berkeley speech

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The American Civil Liberties Union on Wednesday announced its support for conservative firebrand Ann Coulter over her cancelled speech at University of California, Berkeley.

“The heckler’s veto of Coulter’s Berkeley speech is a loss for the 1st Amendment,” ACLU National tweeted on Wednesday. “We must protect speech on campus, even when hateful.”

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The statement comes the day Coulter’s speech was cancelled, though there’s some dispute over who did the cancelling. Coulter on Twitter stated the school pulled her appearance, adding she’s “so sorry for speech crushed by thugs.” Berkeley, meanwhile, insists it “did not cancel the Coulter event and has never prohibited Ms. Coulter from coming on campus.”

Reuters reports Coulter decided to cancel the speech because conservative groups pulled out of sponsoring the event.

Monday, a lawyer for Coulter criticized the ACLU for “ignoring [Coulter’s] case.”

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Republicans defended ‘a vile scoundrel’ who is ‘racist’ and ‘a petty tyrant’ — and it wasn’t Donald Trump

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President Donald Trump's defense attorneys were blasted for their defense of a different president on Tuesday.

"I mean, of course Trump's lawyers are defending Andrew Johnson. Of course," noted MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes.

"Johnson was a vile scoundrel and a drunk and a racist and a petty tyrant whose presidency brought blood and shame upon this nation," Hayes continued. "That's the kindest characterization I could muster."

The host linked to a 2019 piece on Johnson that he wrote for The New York Times as a book review of "The Trial of Andrew Johnson and the Dream of a Just Nation by Brenda Wineapple.

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There are 51 votes to approve calling witnesses in Trump impeachment trial: PBS

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After pieces of John Bolton's manuscript leaked to the press confirming President Donald Trump's bribery of Ukraine, Republicans have turned to support the witnesses they once opposed.

Sens. Mitt Romney (R-UT) and Susan Collins (R-ME) both voted against witnesses and were leaning against them until Bolton's manuscript was leaked to the press after it was turned over to the White House for approval.

PBS News Hour reporter Lisa Desjardins tweeted Monday evening that the news tipped the scales and there were officially 51 votes to approve witnesses.

https://twitter.com/LisaDNews/status/1221951089647538177

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2020 Election

State Department retaliated against NPR by kicking reporter off Mike Pompeo’s plane: report

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The U.S. State Department appears to be retaliating against National Public Radio (NPR) after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo suffered a caught-on-tape meltdown following an interview with NPR "All Things Considered" co-host Mary Louise Kelly.

According to PBS "Newshour" reporter Nick Schifrin, the State Department kicked NPR diplomatic correspondent Michele Kelemen off of Pompeo's jet.

"State Department removes NPR’s Michele Kelemen from Sec. Pompeo plane--where she was scheduled for a pool radio rotation--during upcoming trip to London, Kiev," Schifrin reported.

AFP State Department correspondent Shaun Tandon blasted the move on behalf of the State Department Correspondent's Association.

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