Published July 23, 2007
ACLU Case on Behalf of the Poor Featured on Colbert Report
In his July 23 episode of the Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert featured a segment on San Diego County’s “Project 100%”, sarcastically joking that “our constitutional rights are like precious diamonds-if we want to keep them precious, we have to keep them scarce.” The ACLU challenged the county’s program in Sanchez v. County of San Diego. Under Project 100%, all applicants for public assistance must submit to an unannounced search of their homes or forego aid. Such intrusion into the homes of welfare applicants violates due process and privacy rights as well as the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.
Unfortunately, in September 2006, the three-judge panel upheld San Diego’s program. The decision was the subject of a July 16, 2007, New York Times‘ article titled “Full Constitutional Protection for Some, but No Privacy for the Poor.” Now, Stephen Colbert has made it the focus of his segment “The Word.” To view the video clip, click the link below.