RNC urges police to extend protestor restrictions around Milwaukee convention venue

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The Republican National Committee (RNC) has reportedly sent a letter to the Secret Service asking them to keep protesters further away from the Milwaukee convention venue in July.

The three-page letter, reported first by The New York Times, objected to a plan that had a specific area where protesters would be able to demonstrate.

Todd R. Steggerda, the letter’s author and counsel to the RNC, said people who are attending the convention would have to pass by the protesters on their way into Fiserv Forum, where the event is being held.

The Hill has reached out to the RNC for a copy of the letter, but the Times reported that Steggerda referenced the ongoing pro-Palestinian protests on college campuses. He said that “forced proximity” between the groups that have “differing ideologies” will increase the risk of verbal or physical altercations.

The security plan proposed by the Secret Service would place protesters at Pere Marquette Park, a small public park that’s a quarter of a mile from the convention center, according to the letter.

“Packing demonstrators into a park essentially boxed in by the two streets that thousands of attendees will be using to enter the convention site will only serve to heighten — rather than prevent and diffuse — any tension,” Steggerda wrote.

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The Hill has reached out to the Secret Service for comment, but the Times reported that Alexi Worley, a spokesperson for the Secret Service said the agency is “not formally in receipt” of the letter and said if the agency does receive the letter it will “respond through appropriate channels.”

The Times said it received the letter, addressed to Secret Service Director Kimberly A. Cheatle, “via hand delivery.”

The RNC did not propose a different location for protesters to gather, but said the Secret Service should expand its security perimeter to have protesters further away from the arena.

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