Friday night we’re getting a better idea of just how many groups are organizing protests against the Keystone XL pipeline project.
Thursday night on KELOLAND News, we told you about a federal lawsuit questioning three bills Governor Kristi Noem signed into law.
She says they’ll protect the state from violent protests. Opponents say it violates your right to free speech… and that’s not all.
The ACLU filed the lawsuit on behalf of a handful of people and groups.
Each has plans in the works to protest the pipeline project.
Court papers say Dakota Rural Action is already planning to meet with landowners along the proposed pipeline to talk about the project and organize protests.
Rapid City based NDN Collective is funding and organizing a Native American resistance to the pipeline.
The Sierra Club says it’s using any lawful means available to stop the pipeline.
The documents say the Minnesota-based nonprofit IEN also plans to organize protests.
The groups claim the laws – which took effect this week – are “overbroad“ and “unconstitutionally vague.“
The lawsuit also questions these comments the Governor made at a news conference.
“Those who are in the State actively using disruptive activity or violent activity to do harm or disruption the project, the people, and slow this operation down.“ This type of (law) has not happened anywhere in the nation before,“ Governor Noem said.
The plaintiffs say South Dakota already has laws making rioting and encouraging violence illegal.
Also happening Friday with the project –– President Trump issued a new presidential permit allowing construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.
This permit replaces one granted in 2017. This new permit is intended speed up development of the pipeline.