"The ACLU of Montana condemns in the strongest terms yesterday’s apparent assault on reporter Ben Jacobs for doing his job on behalf of the public. Without a free press, government at all levels – from presidents to police officers – would rarely be held accountable to the people. The First Amendment guarantees the freedom of the press, a right which was borne from our Constitutional framers’ desire to hold those in power accountable to the voters. This is one of our democracy’s core principles. Journalists have been responsible for uncovering some of the most egregious behavior by government officials in our history, from McCarthy seeking to penalize political views to Nixon tampering with a national election. If any government officials elected in this state attempt to stifle the free press, the ACLU of Montana will see them in court.”

Caitlin Borgmann, ACLU of Montana Executive Director