Heartland Part of Full-Page Ad in New York Times Standing Up For Free Speech on Climate, Against Abuse of Power

by Jim Lakely

Source Heartland Institute

Our friends at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) ran a full-page ad in the New York Times today that stands up for the right of individuals and organizations to speak their mind — on the climate, or any other issue. This is, naturally, in response to 18 state attorneys general taking legal action against CEI and other climate realist groups, demanding they hand over all correspondence related to their communication on the issue to ExxonMobil. Click here to see The Heartland Institute’s continually updated web page dedicated to this issue.

Heartland Institute President Joseph Bast was proud to add his name to those of 42 others who stand together against this egregioius abuse of power, as well as the right to speak out publicly against the state ideology of catastrophic man-caused climate change. You can view the ad in its full-color glory, and also read the text below.


All Americans have the right to support causes they believe in.

The right to speak out is among the most fundamental principles of American democracy. It should never be taken away.

Yet, around the country, a group of state attorneys general have launched a misguided effort to silence the views and voices of those who disagree with them.

Recently, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General Claude Walker, and a coalition of other “AGs United for Clean Power” announced an investigation of more than 100 businesses, nonprofits, and private individuals who question their positions on climate change.

This abuse of power is unacceptable. It is unlawful. And it is un-American.

Regardless of one’s views on climate change, every American should reject the use of government power to harass or silence those who hold differing opinions. This intimidation campaign sets a dangerous precedent and threatens the rights of anyone who disagrees with the government’s position—whether it’s vaccines, GMOs, or any other politically charged issue. Law enforcement officials should never use their powers to silence participants in political debates.

We are standing up for every American’s First Amendment right to speak freely. We hope you will join us. This is a critical battle, and it will determine whether our society encourages spirited debate or tolerates only government-approved opinions.


Kent Lassman
President & CEO, Competitive Enterprise Institute

C. Boyden Gray
Former White House Counsel 

Andrew C. McCarthy
Former Chief Assistant United States Attorney, Southern District of New York 

Michael B. Mukasey
U.S. Attorney General, 2007-2009; U.S. District Judge, 1988-2006 

Ross McKitrick
Professor of Economics, University of Guelph 

Ronald D. Rotunda
Distinguished Professor of Jurisprudence, Chapman University 

Richard S. Lindzen
Professor Emeritus of Atmospheric Sciences, MIT 

William Happer
Emeritus Professor of Physics, Princeton University 

Jim DeMint
President, The Heritage Foundation 

James H. Amos, Jr.
President & CEO, National Center for Policy Analysis 

John A. Baden
Chairman, Foundation for Research on Economics & the Environment 

Lisa B. Nelson
CEO, American Legislative Exchange Council 

Paul Driessen
Author & Energy Policy Analyst 

Thomas J. Pyle
President, Institute for Energy Research 

Steven J. Allen
Vice President & Chief Investigative Officer, Capital Research Center 

David Ridenour
President, National Center for Public Policy Research 

Steven J. Milloy
Publisher, JunkScience.com 

Brooke Rollins
President & CEO, Texas Public Policy Foundation 

Paul Gessing
President, Rio Grande Foundation

Ron Arnold
Researcher & Author 

William Perry Pendley
President, Mountain States Legal Foundation 

Adam Brandon
President & CEO, FreedomWorks 

Hank Campbell
President, American Council on Science and Health 

Craig Rucker
Executive Director, Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow 

Tom McCabe
CEO, Freedom Foundation 

Richard B. Belzer

Heather R. Higgins
President & CEO, Independent Women’s Voice 

Joseph G. Lehman
President, Mackinac Center for Public Policy 

Sabrina Schaeffer
Executive Director, Independent Women’s Forum 

Joseph Bast
President, The Heartland Institute 

John C. Eastman
Founding Director, The Claremont Institute’s Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence

Robert Alt
President & CEO, The Buckeye Institute 

Michael Pack
President & CEO, The Claremont Institute 

Josh Blackman
Assistant Professor, South Texas College of Law 

Lynn Taylor
President, Tertium Quids 

David Rothbard
President, Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow 

Tracie Sharp
President & CEO, State Policy Network 

Kenneth Haapala
President, Science and Environmental Policy Project

Tim Phillips
President, Americans for Prosperity 

Myron Ebell
Director of the Center for Energy & Environment, Competitive Enterprise Institute

George Landrith
President, Frontiers of Freedom 

John Tillman
CEO, Illinois Policy Institute 

Craig D. Idso
Chairman, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change 

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