U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Sunday defended abortion advocates’ right to protest against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
“People are upset. They’re going to exercise their First Amendment rights. As long as that’s peaceful, that’s protected,” Buttigieg said on “Fox News Sunday,” according to Business Insider.
Speaking about a report by Politico, which revealed Kavanaugh had to exit Morton’s Steakhouse through the back door after protesters gathered outside in an attempt to confront him. The report noted that the protestors didn’t come into contact with Kavanaugh and he left after finishing his meal.
Responding to the incident, Pete Buttigieg’s husband, Chasten, said on Twitter: “Sounds like he just wanted some privacy to make his own dining decisions.”
Fox News anchor Mike Emanuel asked Buttigieg if he would feel comfortable if protesters did the same to him, to which Buttigieg replied: “Protesting peacefully outside in a public space? Sure. Look, I can’t even tell you the number of spaces, venues, and scenarios where I’ve been protested.”
Emanual also asked him about Chasten’s tweet, to which Buttigieg said, “Any public figure should always, always, be free from violence, intimidation, and harassment, but should never be free from criticism or people exercising their First Amendment rights.”
He added, “And these protesters are upset because a right, an important right that the majority of Americans support, was taken away. Not only the right to choose, by the way, but this justice was part of the process of stripping away the right to privacy.”
Buttigieg continued, “As long as I’ve been alive, settled case law in the United States has been that the Constitution protected the right to privacy. And that has now been thrown out the window by justices, including Justice Kavanaugh who I recall swore up and down in front of God and everyone including United States Congress that they were going to leave settled case law alone.”
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