EVENT:

Keeping Speech Free:
Mackinac Center for Public Policy and Institute for Justice
Defend Against Michigan Teachers' Union Attack

TIME/DATE:

Noon/Tuesday, May 21, 2002

PLACE:

Lansing Center
Capitol View Concourse
333 E. Michigan Avenue
Lansing, MI

PARTICIPANTS:

Chip Mellor, President and General Counsel, Institute for Justice
Clark Neily, Senior Attorney, Institute for Justice
Joseph Overton, Senior Vice President, Mackinac Center for Public Policy

CONTACTS:

John Kramer, Vice President for Communications, Institute for Justice, (202) 955-1300
Joseph Lehman, Executive Vice President, Mackinac Center, (989) 631-0900

SUMMARY:

On Tuesday, May 21, the Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Justice will announce its plans to defend the right to free speech of the Michigan-based Mackinac Center for Public Policy from a frivolous attack by the state's largest teachers' union.

Imagine a world in which people no longer debate public policy issues for fear of being sued by their opponents. That is the goal of a lawsuit filed by the Michigan Education Association (MEA) and its president alleging that the Mackinac Center "misappropriated" his "likeness" by quoting him in a letter. The MEA's willingness to run roughshod over the First Amendment to silence its opponents signals an alarming escalation in the union's battle against meaningful education reform in Michigan-and a frightful harbinger of union tactics should the U.S. Supreme Court decide in favor of school choice in the pending Cleveland voucher case.

NOTE: The Institute for Justice can arrange interviews to facilitate your coverage.
Call John Kramer, IJ's vice president for communications, at (202) 955-1300.

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