Ann Coulter's backers at UC Berkeley file lawsuit

Cheryl Sanders
April 24, 2017

A conservative student group filed a lawsuit against UC Berkeley on Monday, following the college's cancellation of pundit Ann Coulter's scheduled Thursday visit to the campus. Officials, police and the campus Republicans who invited Coulter, say there are valid concerns for violence in what is being called an ongoing "Battle of Berkeley".

A legal team led by Harmeet Dhillon, a San Francisco attorney who represents the Berkeley College Republicans, filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court in San Francisco.

The complaint notes an April 21 letter from Berkeley lawyer Christopher Patti acknowledging that the decision to cancel Coulter's speech was triggered by a "security assessment" conducted by Berkeley police which revealed "mounting intelligence that some of the same groups that previously engaged in local violent action also intended violence at the Coulter Event".

"Defendants freely permitted the expression of non-conservative viewpoints by notable, liberal speakers addressing the same contentious topic Ms. Coulter planned to address - illegal immigration", says the lawsuit.

The university then backtracked and offered an alternate date, but Coulter has insisted that she plans to still come Thursday.

The College Republicans content that the university "hates free speech".

The lawsuit, obtained by, describes how earlier this month, an event featuring Horowitz, a conservative writer, had to be canceled when the school forced it to be held in a remote location before 3:00 pm, when students are busy with classes. Still, fires and fights broke out during the demonstrations against the right-wing conservative.

Officials said last week that the engagement was cancelled because of safety fears.

The university has not yet responded to the Ann Coulter lawsuit.

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