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EXCLUSIVE: A group of Republican senators are introducing legislation Tuesday to protect federal government employees and their family members from having their home addresses made public.
The bill led by Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., the “Public Servant Protection Act,” would make it illegal for an individual or online platform to publicly post the home addresses and phone numbers of government officials if the private information is not taken down within 48 hours of a written demand for removal.
“Judges and other government officials should not be subjected to angry protests and violent threats at home simply because they serve the public at work. Our bill will protect public servants and their families by allowing them to remove their home addresses from any public website,” Cotton told Fox News Digital.
According to the legislation, the official would have to “make a written demand to a person to refrain from publicly displaying on the internet the personal information of the government official or an immediate family member of the government official.”
The notified individual or online platform would then would be required to remove the private information and refrain from posting it again publicly for an additional four years. If it is violated, the victim could file a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator and seek a $1,000 fine.
The legislation comes after a draft opinion written by Justice Samuel Alito that would overturn Roe v. Wade and return the issue of abortion to individual states was leaked last week.
Following the leak, pro-choice activists called for protests at the homes of the six conservative justices who will supposedly vote to overturn Roe, and even published their addresses online.
On Monday evening, protestors organized by activist group “Shut Down DC” targeted Alito’s home in Northern Virginia were chanting: “Our bodies, our voice!” and “Alito is a coward!”
Over the weekend, activists gathered at the homes of Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Brett Kavanaugh, both appointed by Republican presidents.
The Department of Justice is remaining silent on continued protests by abortion activists outside conservative Supreme Court justices’ homes, despite a federal law that makes it illegal to attempt to “influence” federal officials and the outcome of a court case.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki tweeted Monday in response to growing backlash at the protests outside of justices’ homes that President Biden “strongly believes in the Constitutional right to protest.”
“But that should never include violence, threats, or vandalism,” Psaki tweeted. “Judges perform an incredibly important function in our society, and they must be able to do their jobs without concern for their personal safety.”
Joining Cotton as cosponsors include Sens. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., John Boozman, R-Ark., Bill Cassidy, R-La., Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Jim Hagerty, R-Tenn., Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., James Risch, R-Idaho and Ben Sasse R-Neb.