Denver man appeals Dick Cheney subpoena ruling in First Amendment lawsuit

Fresh off delivering what some pundits say was the kiss of death for John McCain by endorsing the senator just before the Nov. 4 election, lame-duck Vice President Dick Cheney may be a bit distracted from trying to cement the Bush legacy in the administration’s final 100 days.

A Denver man steadfastly refuses to drop his lawsuit against Cheney stemming from a 2006 dustup at swanky Beaver Creek resort near Vail, Colo. On Monday, Steven Howards appealed a federal judge’s decision in April that blocked a subpoena seeking Cheney’s testimony.

Howards alleges that he lightly touched Cheney, who was attending the hush-hush conservative confab called the AEI World Forum, and told him the administration’s policy in Iraq was “disgusting.”

Howards was arrested by Secret Service agents who claimed he assaulted the VP, but Republican Eagle County District Attorney Mark Hurlbert (of Kobe Bryant fame) refused to press charges. Howards’ lawsuit alleges his First Amendments right of free speech was violated.

It remains to be seen if the World Forum, launched by former Beaver Creek resident President Gerald Ford in the 1980s, will lose its luster or become even more critical to the conservative politicos who attend outside the mainstream media spotlight.

But there are some Beaver Creek residents who wouldn’t mind seeing it go away, or at least pay more attention to security, which they say is unduly lax given the high-profile attendees.

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