The marshal of the Supreme Court last month asked Virginia and Maryland to enforce laws that she says bar protests outside of justices’ homes, WUSA reports.
Protesters have picketed outside of some conservative justices’ homes since news leaked that the Supreme Court planned to overturn Roe, striking down federal abortion protections.
Mashal Gail Curley wrote that Virginia and Maryland laws ban protesting outside of justices’ homes and asked state officials to enforce those ordinances.
“For weeks on end, large groups of protesters chanting slogans, using bullhorns, and banging drums have picketed Justices' homes,” she wrote to Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan.
She also sent letters to officials in Maryland’s Montgomery County and Virginia’s Fairfax County, noting that protests have “increased since May.”
“Earlier this week, for example, 75 protesters loudly picketed at one Justice's home in Montgomery County for 20-30 minutes in the evening, then proceeded to picket at another Justice's home for 30 minutes, where the crowd grew to 100, and finally returned to the first Justice's home to picket for another 20 minutes," Curley wrote in a letter to Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich. “This is exactly the kind of conduct that the Maryland and Montgomery County laws prohibit.”
A Hogan spokesperson told WUSA that the constitutionality of the anti-protest measure is questionable but the governor had directed police to “further review enforcement options that respect the First Amendment and the Constitution.”
A spokesperson for Youngkin told the outlet that he had made a similar request of Fairfax County executive Jeffrey McKay. McKay said that the law is unconstitutional.
“The law cited in the letter is a likely violation of the First Amendment, and a previous court case refused to enforce it. As long as individuals are assembling on public property and not blocking access to private residences, they are permitted to be there," he said.