OFFICIAL RELEASE: Two CODEPINK activists disrupt McCain's RNC speech

Posted by CODEPINK Staff

Medea Benjamin, 415-235-6517
Nancy Mancias, 415-342-6409

ST. PAUL -- Two activists of the women's peace group CODEPINK disrupted John McCain's speech Thursday night at the Republican National Convention, immediately following another activist of the anti-war veterans group, Iraq Veterans Against War.

At the start of McCain's speech, veteran Adam Kokesh of Washington, D.C. emerged from the crowd near the stage inside the Xcel Center here carrying a sign and shouting messages to stop the war. About four minutes into the speech, CODEPINK activist Elizabeth Hourican, 38,  a McCain constituent of Phoenix, AZ and longtime protester of McCain's support for war, approached the stairs of the center toward the stage wearing a pink slip that said, "McCain = more war" with a banner that said "McCain = war." Hourican, shouting phrases including "Women say no to war!" and "We want a peace president!", raised her hands in a peace sign before being carried out. A few minutes later, San Francisco native Nancy Mancias, 38, did the same.

They were both released within an hour with no charges.

They were given their tickets to the speech by Republicans who decided not to attend, based on their displeasure with McCain's position on war, oil drilling and other issues.

Their disruption follows a similar disruption Wednesday by CODEPINK co-founders Medea Benjamin and Jodie Evans during Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin's speech at the RNC. They approached the stage where Palin was speaking, adjusted their clothes to reveal pink slips that read "Palin is not a woman's choice," stood there at the side of the stage for about a minute and yelled "Women say no to war!" and "Women need a vice-president for peace!" They also removed banners that read "Women need a peace vice-president." After another moment, security then grabbed Benjamin and Evans and escorted them one at a time out of the St. Paul Xcel Center, where they were held until the end of the Palin's speech and told they would be arrested if they tried to reenter. They were told they'd committed an arrestable offense but they were not charged.(See footage of the event here).

"Sarah Palin is not a woman's choice," said Jodie Evans, co-founder, moments after being released. "That's it."

CODEPINK is a nonpartisan women's peace group. They vehemently oppose McCain's pro-war, anti-environment, anti-choice positions. More details to come. For questions, please call Nancy Mancias at 415-342-6409.

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