And not just campaign events, either; some events billed as “Presidential” and billed to the taxpayers are also subject to screening.
One Guardsman returning from Iraq was booted from a campaign rally because one of the young boys he was accompanying had a Kerry sticker on his wallet.
Not only Kerry supporters get screened out; someone with a pro-life T-shirt was asked to leave.
The threat of arrest is routinely used — and there has been at least one actual arrest — to dispose of unwanted guests. The Secret Service and the local cops point fingers at each other about who is making the threats.
Naturally, Ken Mehlman lies about it.
Of course, it would be unpatriotic — likely to embolden the enemy and dishearten the troops — to suggest that the Commander-in-Chief is somewhat deficient in the courage department, so I will patriotically refrain from doing so. Perhaps Mr. Bush will be find tonight’s encounter with voters tonight who aren’t on his side instructive.
Hat tip: Orin Kerr of the Volokh Conspiracy.