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DOES THAT MEAN “YES?”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Oct. 6, 2015) — On Monday, constitutional instructor and writer Michael Gaddy submitted an article to The Post & Email which reported that members of the U.S. Secret Service appeared on the doorsteps of private citizens in the port town of Kotzebue, AK searching for personal firearms during Obama’s trip there between August 31 and September 2.
According to The New York Times, Obama’s purpose in traveling to the 49th state was to “call for urgent and aggressive action to tackle climate change, capitalizing on a poignant tableau of melting glaciers, crumbling permafrost and rising sea levels to illustrate the immediacy of an issue he hopes to make a central element of his legacy.”
In his editorial, Gaddy quoted a mainstream media report about Obama’s upcoming visit as having stated, “Everyone from fishermen to local leaders are getting ready for the president’s visit–and have their own hopes for what he takes away.”
Offering his own comment in response, Gaddy wrote, “What they were unprepared for his visit to ‘take away’ were their firearms.”
He continued, “…What the residents were not expecting–or prepared for—was the arrival of Secret Service agents moving from door to door in this village of something over 3,000 residents, searching for firearms prior to the arrival of the great one. All of this during hunting season in what could only be referred to as ‘rural America,’ of course.”
The City of Kotzebue’s slogan is “Gateway to the Arctic.”
After posting Gaddy’s editorial, The Post & Email contacted the Secret Service through its spokesperson, Brian Leary, and asked:
Hello, I have just been told that members of the US Secret Service went door-to-door during Obama’s visit to Kotzebue, Alaska seeking to discover how many personal firearms were possessed of the residents. The report did not say whether or not any firearms were confiscated. Are you able to confirm or deny that Secret Service agents did, in fact, enter people’s homes looking for and/or taking personal firearms without a warrant?
Thank you very much.
Sharon Rondeau, Editor
The Post & Email
Within a few hours, we received a response from a Robert Hoback:
|From:||ROBERT HOBACK (GPA)|
|Sent:||Mon 10/05/15 4:50 PM|
Good Afternoon Sharon,
Reference the below email, are you looking to write and if so, do you have a deadline?
To which we responded:
Good afternoon, sir, I actually received an editorial from one of my regular writers who reported that he received the information from a resident of Kotzebue. Although it was an editorial and published as such, as editor I am looking to confirm the story. There is no deadline, but I would like to write a factual article on the issue with first-hand information.
I have reproduced the article here:
We then included Gaddy’s complete article in printer-friendly format.
We have received no further response from Hoback or Leary.
On Tuesday evening EDT, which was during business hours in Alaska, we placed a phone call to the City of Kotzebue and questioned the person answering the phone as to whether or not she had any knowledge of the alleged firearms searches during Obama’s visit. She repeatedly said, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry…” and said she could not point us to anyone who could elucidate us further.
The Secret Service is a division of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).