Jeff Sessions seeking the names of 1.5 million Inauguration Day protesters

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Attorney General Jeff Sessions actually aw-shucked his way into condemning the neo-Nazi bulls–t in Charlottesville. He also announced that the Department of Justice was opening a new civil rights investigation into the murder of Heather Heyer as a possible hate crime. The investigation sounds pretty narrow, meaning it doesn’t sound like the DOJ will be investigating all of the hate groups which came together in Charlottesville over the weekend, nor will the DOJ be issuing subpoenas for any website owners or blog hosting servers which provide outlets for these violent white supremacists to gather and plot online. Again, it’s worth noting that the biggest priority for the Sessions DOJ is white grievance, and the imaginary cause of “reverse racism.” But of course, the Sessions DOJ will try to subpoena the names, addresses, IPs, and financial information of people organizing peaceful protests against the Trump administration:

The Department of Justice has requested information on visitors to a website used to organize protests against President Trump, the Los Angeles-based Dreamhost said in a blog post published on Monday. Dreamhost, a web hosting provider, said that it has been working with the Department of Justice for several months on the request, which believes goes too far under the Constitution.

DreamHost claimed that the complying with the request from the Justice Department would amount to handing over roughly 1.3 million visitor IP addresses to the government, in addition to contact information, email content and photos of thousands of visitors to the website, which was involved in organizing protests against Trump on Inauguration Day.

The company is currently challenging the request. A hearing on the matter is scheduled for Friday in Washington.

“In essence, the Search Warrant not only aims to identify the political dissidents of the current administration, but attempts to identify and understand what content each of these dissidents viewed on the website,” the company’s general counsel, Chris Ghazarian, said in a legal argument opposing the request. The web provider published a purported search warrant issued by the Superior Court of the District of Columbia that asks for records and information related to the website and its owner, along with information that could be used to identify subscribers of the website. This includes “names, addresses, telephone numbers and other identifiers, e-mail addresses, business information, the length of service (including start date), means and source of payment for services (including any credit card or bank account number), and information about any domain name registration.”

[From The Hill]

You can read Dreamhost’s blog post on the DOJ search warrant for the 1.3 million visitors to disruptj20.org here. If the DOJ’s argument is that they need to identify people who planned “violent” demonstrations – which is bullsh-t, because 99.999% of the Inauguration Day protests were peaceful – then why isn’t the same criteria being used to shut down the white supremacist hate-sites and see all of their visitors? Is it because the Trump administration already has all of the white supremacists’ names, because those are his voters, contributors and steadfast defenders?

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71 Responses to “Jeff Sessions seeking the names of 1.5 million Inauguration Day protesters”

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  1. Nicole says:

    Good luck with that you stupid racist elf.

  2. Tiffany says:

    Hold up, I thought Banana Republic was a place to buy overpriced dresses and pants.

    And to Robert Mueller, there is a muffin basket in it for you to send this bastard to jail.

  3. Esmom says:

    I said in another thread that I think I’ve finally lost it. This confirms it, right on the heels of listening to a guy on NPR tell an interview that “both sides” were looking for a fight in Charlottesville. What the actual f&ck? I’m sick.

    • Megan says:

      I’m with you, Esmom. My stomach is churning. I think I may actually be physical sick this morning. I can’t take it anymore.

    • detritus says:

      The ‘both sides’ argument is infuriating. That Bud commercial, just ugh. Tapping in to this common idea and marketing it, that somehow ignorance is a valid point of view. Just as saying the world is flat, or that disease is caused by miasmas and bad humours, or phrenology.

    • mia girl says:

      I’m sick too. And what makes me even more sick is that I believe the major motivation for this is Trump’s obsession with the size of his inauguration crowd (vs size of protest crowds). Like he’s demanded the DOJ find a way to prove protesters are being paid to be there or something. For Trump it is about his fragile, man baby ego.

    • jwoolman says:

      Probably thinks those Antifa jerks represent all the nonviolent counterprotesters. They really did come with the clear intent to damage people and property, both at inaugural protests and at Berkeley. That’s what they do. Might as well be on Sessions’ payroll, if they aren’t already.

      The media tend to be easily distracted by bright and shiny things, that’s why we’re stuck with Trump. In a regional antiwar demo years ago, the only hint of violence came from the guy who proved to be a police plant. He was carefully restrained by the protesters’ trained unarmed peacekeepers and handed over to his colleagues, the police. But the media ran with “Antiwar demonstration erupts in violence”….. The reporters didn’t bother checking anything out.

    • Olenna says:

      I tell you what, I’m about sick and tired of NPR and I’ve been listening to public radio for many, many years. For months, Morning Edition has been walking the same line of stupidity that CNN crossed by presenting “both sides”. I don’t turn to public radio to hear *crazy*; I can hear it on CNN, 24/7.

    • ATLMathMom says:

      I was half-watching MSNBC last night when one of the guests’ statement caught my attention. The gist of what he said was that the “many sides” argument was just another false equivalency. One side is standing up for racial EQUALITY, while the Nazis are supporting white supremacy. Just thought that was a simple, eloquent way to pointing out the false equivalency.

  4. IlsaLund says:

    The plan to stifle all dissent against this incompetent administration continues. Meanwhile domestic terrorists are allowed to spew violence and hate across the country.

    • ORIGINAL T.C. says:

      Yep the enemies list. Classic dictator moves. Cabinet has to clap for you and talk about how great you are before every meeting. They find only good news to show you, hiding the bad. You suppress the media and call them the enemy of the state. You get rid of the ethical people in the government, toss out the scientific facts. You get the names, family members and work places of everyone who opposes you. You elevate the hate group brown-shirts to prominence. You fester hate for all others.

      Next will be Trump statues and pictures all over the country. We will have to give salutes as we go past.

  5. Megan says:

    #RESIST God bless whoever leaked this story. To quote the Post, democracy dies in the dark.

    Shame on every senator who voted to confirm this known racist and anti-democratic troll.

  6. krAkken says:

    Ugh sickening. But it does make me look forward to yet another WH fail.
    They are obviously making their lists up

  7. Seraphina says:

    So THIS is what he decides to focus on? THIS is what my tax later money is going to????? We Americans need to flush out all of congress and the administration and public administrators and begin a new. What a bunch of BS. What a mockery we have become. A far cry from what the founding fathers envisioned.

  8. IlsaLund says:

    1.5 million Inauguration Day protestors? Isn’t that number higher than the actual number of people attending the event…lol

  9. Clare says:

    This is so so terrifying. For years I have been telling my British husband I want to move home to the US…but this past week has been a painful reality check that the America I left 15 years ago, no longer exists. I feel like this is only going to get worse, much much worse, before it starts to get better.

    • Maria F. says:

      i totally understand. I lived in the US for 13 years and was always heartbroken about leaving it. But that feeling has subsided in the last 8 months. Now I do not even want to spend my tourist money there, although I love the country and my friends.

      • Lady D says:

        I haven’t been across the line for a couple of years, but to go now would be to support Trump. I really feel for the decent Americans, it sucks you have to live this. On a slightly positive note for you, NAFTA talks are starting and soon it will be Canada and Mexico’s turn in his twitter spotlight. Lucky us. There is so much chaos in Trump’s life, does it ever wear him down or is he loving it?

  10. swak says:

    I just don’t know what to say anymore. Wonder who is behind this other than Sessions. Or is this a way to get back into the good graces of Trump.

  11. Electric Tuba says:

    Ok LightPurple and Kitty and who else are our celebitchy lawyer friends here? Can you fine folks help us out here? Anything we can do to deter Golum Sessions and his evil employers? Legally I mean? This seems huge and very bad.

    Edited to add that I know the government has always ALWAYS kept tabs on protesters and even infiltrated groups posing as BP oil disaster protesters and anti war protesters in the 60s and 70s and when GW Bush started his war. They usually just get info through Facebook now.

    • paranormalgirl says:

      not an attorney, but husband is. He said that from the information available at the moment, this is all a gigantic first amendment violation. Unless there was a specific threat by a specific person, it’s a violation of rights. That’s only from the limited information available at the moment. He doesn’t have all the information and he is an attorney in the entertainment business, so it’s not his field of specialty.

      • jwoolman says:

        It makes no sense to go after peaceful protesters and people who are just wanting to view information about organizing peaceful protests. That’s intimidation and has to be unConstitutional. What is wrong with these people? First they try to get identity-theft level information on every registered voter in the country, and now this.

        They know who the violent protesters are and can go investigate them all they want: the neonazi white supremacists, and the rather fascistic violently anti-fascist Antifa folks. Of course, President Tweeter likes the former and Steve Bannon is probably thick as thieves with the latter….

    • jwoolman says:

      Electric Tuba – A friend who was in a Quaker group legally protesting the Vietnam War said they always knew who the government plants were. They were the guys trying to push the group to break the law and be violent. Oh, yeah. Good use of tax money right there, trying to push a bunch of Quakers into violent protest.

      Such things were also happening in the 80s and 90s when I was information-pushing on peace issues and antiwar protests. Police spies came to the planning session for one regional protest, they kind of stood out for various reasons. Nobody minded, we wanted them to hear all about it. We always were transparent, and I always offered to put our phone tappers (we could hear the clicks when their old equipment kicked in on the phone) on our mailing list and phone tree if they sent me money for reimbursement (stamps, printing, long distance charges – no unlimited plans or e-mail back then) through my Congressman. Witness for Peace, a coalition of churches, always would stop periodically during their national conference calls to pray for the spies listening in. Sanctuary churches (for Central American refugees) did the same in their services.

  12. Rachel says:

    This is a nightmare. A waking nightmare.

    I’ve never been one of those uber patriotic people waving a flag and touting the US as the greatest county in the world. Because I know it’s not. However, I’ve always loved our Constitution and the ideals forming the foundation of this country. And to see what has become of this government… it’s horrifying.

  13. Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

    “The Department of Justice has requested information on visitors to a website used to organize protests against President Trump”.

    No need to say the obvious, but do *they* know one thing about democracy?

  14. littlemissnaughty says:

    Yeah. Of course. This is why I fly into a rage every time some dimwit says “I don’t care about online privacy. I have nothing to hide.” But don’t you??? People are f*cking idiots about these issues. Being a law-abiding citizen does not mean you have nothing to hide. It means you’re not a criminal. Until someone decides to come after you for your beliefs or decides to turn you into a criminal retroactively. You have nothing to hide NOW. But tomorrow, who knows?

  15. Valois says:

    Most authoritarian governments try to have a list with names (figuratively and/or literally) ready for when they have an excuse to get rid of the people on the list.

    Not saying that this is what happening, but we should be cautious.

    • jwoolman says:

      I always suggested contingency plans for communication if we were blocked from using mail and phones in case of martial law or other interference. Even walking from town to town. People tend to forget how fragile the systems are and how easy it would be for a government to shut things down quickly. That is certainly true today with the reliance on the net. But back then, the lovely Oliver North was pushing plans to collect all us pesky protesters into old military bases after imposing martial law, in case of objections to more direct wars in Central America. Don’t ever think it can’t happen here. And Trump’s people are a lot scarier than Reagan’s people.

      Back in the olden days, we found that mysterious problems with long-distance lines would occur just when a contra aid vote was suddenly coming up in Congress and we were alerting people so they could call Congress. One AFSC office (American Friends Service Committee, the Quaker service organization) was practically impossible to reach during those times, and it wasn’t because their lines were actually overloaded. We would get weird automatic messages from the phone company. I mentioned this to them and they said it happened frequently and yes, it was deliberate interference.

    • Esmerelda says:

      A proscription list. Which hypothetically could be leaked ‘accidentally’… and if the whipped up base would then decide to act on that information, well, what a pity… Scary times!

  16. Radley says:

    This is horrifying. We’re all gonna have to take to the streets and March that SOB right out of the white house.

    Personally, I’m ready. Enough.

  17. Vizia says:

    DreamHost has always been awesome, btw. Both as a provider, and also because their blog regularly cracks me up. But fighting back and making this public cements their awesomeness in my mind.

  18. Veronica says:

    As easy as it is to make fun of this racist Keebler elf, these continued attempts to “unearth” dissidents is frightening in its implications. It’s literally 1930s Third Reich maneuvering.

  19. kdlaf says:

    I’m confused, is it 1.3 or 1.5? The title of this article says 1.5 but what is quoted is 1.3…

    Anywho, talk about deflection – whenever something horrible like this happens I start to think about how future generations will view this period – will it be in horror/embarrassment or will this behavior/way of running government be normal by then…

  20. Joycee says:

    We should all register or whatever on Dreamhost because then they would have millions and millions of average Americans to investigate!

  21. blairski says:

    Unbelievable. Feeding directly into the “it’s both sides” narrative. I think they know their time in office may be very short, and they’re trying to get as much negative stuff done as possible, plus put themselves in a position to manipulate the next election. Sorry, usually I’m a silver-lining person but just bummed this morning.

  22. HK9 says:

    They are really going to waste taxpayers money on this when they have homegrown terrorists to deal with?? Let them take it to the supreme court and waste more $$ fighting the huge first amendment rights violations. Nazis are not the only people who get to protest-we all do and we will not be silenced. IDIOTS.

  23. Ruyana says:

    What they are trying to do is to make us afraid to protest, to make us be silent in the face of atrocity. trumpy’s fragile little ego can’t take any kind of criticism, no matter how mild and apparently he is siccing his Evil Keebler Elf on the populace so we won’t hurt his tender little feelings. He wants to punish us for hating him even though he caused that hate through his inexcusable actions.

  24. why? says:

    Sessions is wrecking all kinds of havoc and once again the GOP are just sitting there letting him do it. This is the danger of letting Sessions stay in the WH. When is enough going to be enough? It’s like Sessions and The King of Lies and Fake News are pursuing the protesters to appease the WS for having to “condemn them” yesterday and Putin for having to sign that sanctions bill.

  25. adastraperaspera says:

    Hey, Racist Bubba Elf Sessions,
    I was in that group of anti-Inauguration protesters, holding my “We The People Defend Dignity” sign, screaming my head off against your ilk and marching down the street while the Trumpkin evil ones were over on the mall “inaugurating” your dictator. I saw your faux, Putin-sponsored, supposedly “antifa” black clad rioters who smashed windows and set off firecrackers run by as they taunted the police and made a scene. I have also signed up on any and all websites with groups who are going to lawfully remove your administration and resist forcefully until you are all GONE. Go ahead and find my address and phone. And come over to my house as soon as you do. My partner is an attorney, and so I look forward to you charging me with something bogus. I will hit you with the biggest lawsuit you have ever, ever seen. You spineless, evil, end-of-the-world-worshipping loser. You will never take away my rights.
    Sincerely,
    Make My Day

  26. magnoliarose says:

    Bo Jeffrey will be gone before this can even happen. This will be in courts forever and I highly doubt the Supreme Court would even let it pass.

  27. why? says:

    In June, Chris Kobach demanded that all 50 states hand over voter information and judge rules that it’s okay for them to collect that information because the Voter Suppression Commission isn’t an agency and the group representing voters failed to show how collecting voter information was harmful to a voter.

    Yesterday, Sessions demands that a website hand over protester information and informatoin on everyone who visited an ant- Trump the website.

    When is enough going to be enough for the GOP?