Labor Mural Attorneys File Appeal Against Judge Woodcock’s Decision Last Month


By Carol McCracken (Post # 1,125)

Attorneys for the plaintiffs in the nationally recognized lawsuit against Maine’s Governor Paul LePage have filed a notice of appeal to the U.S. District Court’s decision granting the State’s motion for summary judgment and denying the plaintiffs their day in court.

In March of 2011, Governor LePage ordered the mural depicting Maine’s labor history removed from the Department of Labor’s walls, because it was perceived as being pro-labor. Reportedly, an anonymous business person had complained that the mural was “propaganda to further the agenda of the Union movement.” The plaintiffs filed suit against the State last April to compel Governor LePage to return the mural, reveal its location and ensure it is in good condition and protected. The removal of the mural has received worldwide attention as an act of abridgment of First Amendment rights. The relatively new concept of “government speech” will be tested by the appeal.

The appeal will be heard in Boston. The reason for that is that the First Circuit Court of Appeals covers a wider area – and the Boston location is the next step up from the US District Court in Maine, according to a source close to the case.

For more background information on this lawsuit, please visit Post # 1,006 dated March 23rd, 2012 herein.