Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Does the Citizen Participation Act mean anything goes?

The Beacon Blog had a reference to a Chicago Reader story about how Planned Parenthood was trying to use the new Citizen Participation Act to argue...

 But leading the list is the assertion that the Citizen Participation Act gives Planned Parenthood "absolute immunity against plaintiffs' claims." That's because the organization was campaigning for local political support, and the CAP -- to quote it -- provides that "acts in furtherance of the constitutional rights to petition, speech, association, and participation in government . . . are immune from liability, regardless of intent or purpose" (emphasis from Planned Parenthood's attorney, Alan Gilbert of Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal)

So are they arguing that anything goes?  So you can lie, libel and slander until you are blue in the face?  If so and that turns out to be the case then you are in the free an clear?  

That could have made the whole argument over the third high school a lot more interesting. 

Does it mean that you could slander some school board member or elected official and then argue, hey it was in act in furtherance of my constitutional right to petition so even though I may have trashed someone unfairly and ruined his life it's all cool....  Good luck finding school board members down the road if this is in fact the case.

Suffice to say if this turns out to be the case look for the leg to rewrite the law. 

I am looking forward to some MSM coverage on this.


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