WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D – Los Angeles County) and Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) introduced the Protect Peaceful Protests Act to address federal law enforcement overreach and uphold Americans’ First Amendment right to peacefully protest. The bill amends current law to prohibit the Attorney General from designating Drug Enforcement Administration officers to enforce non-drug related laws. It also restricts the ability of the U.S. Marshals Service to deputize other law enforcement officers and prohibits the Secretary of Homeland Security from designating non-Federal Protective Services officials to protect federal buildings, unless requested by the highest executive of the state, territory, D.C. or Indian tribe where the protest activity is to occur.
“The excessive use of force against peaceful protesters in Washington, D.C. and Portland was disturbing and un-American.” Rep. Lieu said. “I’m pleased to introduce this legislation, which would restrict the ability of this Administration or any future one from abusing its power by unnecessarily deploying federal agents to peaceful protests. We must ensure all Americans can safely exercise their right to protest without being fearful of those who are meant to protect them.”
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