It was Sen. John McCain’s staff who asked security at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts to remove people holding protest signs at the venue – not U.S. Secret Service agents, who were not involved in Carol Kreck’s ouster from the galleria.
A video of the incident circulating widely on the Internet shows a DCPA security guard saying that he was told by the Secret Service to remove Kreck, who was holding a paper sign that said “McCain = Bush.”
But Thursday, after two days of being vilified by bloggers, letter writers and others, the Secret Service emphatically denied involvement…
DCPA spokeswoman Suzanne Blandon said the guard who told Kreck to leave was “simply mistaken” in identifying the Secret Service as the agency that wanted her to leave. Blandon said the guard did not intend to use the Secret Service as leverage and did not mean to mislead anyone.
Frankly, it was looking bad for McCain’s “accessible” image whether it was the Secret Service who ordered Ms. Kreck’s removal or somebody else. But the Secret Service evidently didn’t want to take the fall for this one, as was eventually the case with the Denver Three as you may recall.
Based on this new information, it seems the Denver Police were following orders, the DCPA’s rent-a-cop too–albeit with some eyebrow-raising embellishment, and the Secret Service had no part in violating Ms. Kreck’s constitutional rights. We see no reason to disbelieve any of this.
So what’s left? Well, McCain staff apparently objecting to a sign in the line outside the event that read “McCain=Bush,” and entirely of their own volition ordering the signholder’s removal based on, as it turns out, dubious legal grounds.
Worst-case scenario, wouldn’t you say?