Roving War Criminal: A Timeline of Actions Against Karl Rove

CODEPINK has been confronting Karl Rove for the past eight years, since he lied the US into invading Iraq. In the spring of 2010 Karl embarked on a nationwide book tour with his new book, Courage and Consequence (could the title be more ironic?), and CODEPINK has been at his events, holding up handcuffs and a citizens arrest warrant for his arrest. Will a real cop please see to it that justice is served? If you hear that Rove is coming to your city, follow our citizens arrest guide and contact Nancy for help organizing an action! See book tour dates at

Arresting a Roving War Criminal: A timeline of CODEPINK Actions to Arrest Karl Rove — 2002-2009

November, 2002

Washington, DC: CODEPINK disrupts a class that Karl Rove was teaching at The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) of Johns Hopkins University.

Oct 14, 2005

Karl Rove At Center Of CIA Leak Investigation: CODEPINKers introduce a seven foot tall Karl Rove-Brand Condom bearing the slogan, "Some Things Should Never Leak" outside U.S. District Court in Washington, DC. Rove made his fourth appearance before the grand jury investigating the leak of a covert CIA agent's identity.

December, 2005

In an article titled Tickled Pink from the Chicago Free Speech Zone Medea Benjamin is quoted as saying: Some prominent Republicans "came out in the Washington Post and said "[Karl] Rove is now a liability," Benjamin said.

"Bush is in trouble if his brain has become a liability " and now Bush is also a liability to his own party."

Spring, 2003

Washington, DC:

"You pink ladies are everywhere -- didn't I see you in Salt Lake City last week?"

-White House strategist Karl Rove

May 20, 2006

Bird Dog Rove: On a chilly, very early Saturday morning, Karl Rove came to Wheaton, IL (Chicago Area) for a fund-raiser for Peter Roskum. And you know that we were there to "greet" Rove!

Valerie Plame Scandal: CODEPINK was outside Patrick Fitzgerald's hearings on Plamegate dressed in large condoms that said, “Fire the Leaker,” with Karl Rove's face on the small condoms that we handed to passersby.

The Saturday before August 22, 2006

Austin, Texas: CODEPINK and activists from Cindy Sheehan's Camp Casey protested Karl Rove in Texas. He felt the heat and Tiffany Burns found herself in prison stripes for a night and day until Willie Nelson posted her bail.

February 28, 2007

Austin, Texas: Rove greeted by “unopen arms” at Texas State. CODEPINK activist Susan Cook coordinated the protest.

August, 2007

Washington, DC: Karl Rove, Deputy Chief of Staff, resigns from the Bush Administration, but not before specifically calling out CODEPINK.

In a telephone interview from Air Force One as he flew with the president to Texas, Mr. Rove dismissed the widely held image of himself as a political divider.

"I love the myth that the nature of politics as practiced by focusing on a narrow group," he said. In fact, he said, "it's been taking the energy of those [in the base] and building on it and expanding it outward." He is glad Democrats have taken the notion seriously, however, because "it's gotten people saying, 'We should be focusing on the base of our party, like and the Pink Ladies,'" Mr. Rove said, the latter a reference to a women's antiwar group called Code Pink.

  • Wall Street Journal article

  • Medea's 10 good things about 2007
    Last but not least, this year saw the resignation of some of Bush's closest allies in government-Donald Rumsfeld resigned as Secretary of Defense, Alberto Gonzalez as Attorney General, and Karl Rove as Deputy Chief of Staff. Best of all, we can give thanks that we only have ONE YEAR left of the criminal, war-mongering, constitution-shredding, rights-violating, torture-sanctioning Bush Administration! It's just GOT to get better than this!

  • CODEPINK action alert

December 6, 2007

Austin, Texas: CODEPINK Austin descended upon the Renaissance Austin Hotel to protest the presence of Karl Rove at the Associated Republicans of Texas (ART) fundraising dinner. Several members protested with signs in the lobby while a 30-foot banner was launched from the 3rd floor balcony, lifted by 120 red, white & blue balloons. Immediately following the banner launch, 400 Rovebucks showered down from the 6th floor balcony onto the unsuspecting Republicans and hotel guests below.

July 11, 2008

Washington, DC: CODEPINK activists attended the hearing of the House Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law where Rove was subpoenaed, but Rove didn't show. The women were told to remove clothing with political statements and hats under threat of arrest. The women accused the committee of censorship and say that Rove suffers no consequences for failing to come before Congress while they are threatened with arrest for expressing their right to free speech.

"Former presidential adviser Karl Rove has refused to appear today to answer questions in accordance with his obligations under the subpoena served on him," Sanchez announced with indignation. The committee voted, 7 to 1, to order Rove -- again -- to appear before the committee.

July 18, 2008

Virginia Beach, VA: Hampton Roads CODEPINK protested Rove's appearance with a mock trial at a Republican campaign fundraiser at Ruth's Chris Steak House.

August 12, 2008

Houston, Texas: Karl Rove came to Houston to raise money for Republican candidates at a party at the Houston Aquarium. A group from CODEPINK Houston and Veterans for Peace met him with "Karl Rove Shark Attack" signs!

October 21, 2008

San Francisco: CODEPINK activists in San Francisco stage an arrest of Karl Rove at a financial conference… twice!

November 13, 2008

San Francisco: CODEPINKers again stage citizens arrest of Karl Rove at debate with John Edwards and Nancy Mancias and Janine Boneparth are arrested!

Photo and News:

February 9, 2009

Los Angeles, CA: Patricia Foulkrod stages citizens arrest of Karl Rove during Q and A at Loyola Marymount University, where Rove spoke during First Amendment Week. Rove made $30,000 for the speaking engagement, the cost of more than one students' tuition, but didn't get away scott-free.

  • Rove Sells First Amendment for $30,000, by Patricia Foulkrod
    "The first thing I heard outside Loyola's lecture hall were wonderfully loud voices of protest--the Obama victory has not seduced these students into forgiveness. 'Bush's Brain ...Down the Drain'." More...

May 26, 2009

New York, New York: CODEPINKers Dana and Rae stage citizens arrest of Karl Rove on stage at Radio City Music Hall. Rove was debating Democratic strategist James Carville. The gals used cuffs, the citizens arrest, and unfurled a banner. Dana lost her shoe while pouncing on stage!

  • CODEPINK Report
  • Huffington Post News Article
    In the middle of the debate, various protesters got up and tried to disrupt the proceedings. first a group in the orchestra stood up and unfurled a banner with an incoherent message. Then suddenly a woman appeared on stage with handcuffs with the intent to arrest Karl Rove. A woman sitting next to me then turned to her husband and said, "I feel like I am back in the sixties."

March 12 , 2010

Fargo, ND: Finally, a little reminder about what Karl Rove thinks about WMDs

March 16, 2010

Fort Worth, Texas: Fort Worth and Dallas CODEPINKers protested Rove at the World Affairs Council event at the Fort Worth Club.

They also created a new verse to “We Shall Not Be Moved”:

Tell Karl Rove that torture is a crime
Not just for the lower-level guys
But for all those
Who planned and authorized it
Torture is a crime!

  • CODEPINK Report

  • Speaking in Fort Worth, Rove criticizes Democrats' healthcare plan. A small group of demonstrators gathered before the speech, standing in drizzling rain and holding signs that read "Torture is illegal" and "No one is above the law." "Rove is here [Tuesday] on his book tour, trying to legitimize what he has done," said Yvette Richardson of Fort Worth, a member of the anti-war group Code Pink. "Fort Worth isn't going to let him come here and not be" opposed. Read more..

March 29, 2010

Beverly Hills, CA: Jodie Evans, Deedee Sheehan, and Patricia Foulkrod stage citizens arrest at Rove's book signing; Rove storms off stage. Action goes viral in media with video on CNN and other stations. Sets stage for tour.

March 30, 2010

Lafayette, CA: Bay Area CODEPINKers Susan Harman and Cynthia Papermaster hold Arrest Rove banner outside Rove's appearance at a Republican fundraiser. In above photo, Deborah Johns, right, who has a son who has fought in Iraq, argues with Code Pink protesters Cynthia Papermaster, left, and Susan Harman, right, outside the Lafayette Veterans Memorial Building where Karl Rove spoke inside Tuesday March 30, 2010 in Lafayette Calif.. Rove, the GOP strategist and former Bush adviser, spoke to a large crowd about the new healthcare bill, as well as his new book "Courage and Consequence."

March 31, 2010

La Jolla, California: Rove gets another icey response in Southern California: San Diego CODEPINK holds protest outside Rove's book signing at Warwick's of La Jolla

  • Michael Moore News Article
    Protester Jeeni Criscenzo said she showed up “to educate people.” She added: “Karl Rove is trying to rewrite history. The title of the book includes the word ‘courage,' but it takes no courage to kill people and lie to Americans.”

April 1, 2010

Houston, TX: CODEPINK confronts Rove at his book signing outside the Westin Galleria Hotel


April 9, 2010

Henderson/Las Vegas, NV: Jodie Evans and CODEPINKers confront Rove with the cuffs.

April 12, 2010

Colorado: The Colorado Independent runs a story on Rove's upcoming trip to CO that calls tour
The Controversial Karl Rove-Code Pink book tour

April 15, 2010

Minnesota: The Minnesota Independent runs a story on Rove's upcoming trip to Minneapolis that makes link to Karl Rove and CODEPINK book tour.

April 16, 2010

Bend, Oregon: CODEPINK Bend protests Rove's book signing.

April 18, 2010

Karl Rove calls Fox And Friends ‘Sad' For Covering CODEPINK action in LA

April 17-18, 2010

Denver suburbs and Colorado Springs, Colorado

April 20, 2010

Austin, TX: PINK Police held arrest Rove signs and dangled cuffs inside and outside the University of Texas where Rove spoke. Rove called the protesters ‘malcontents'.

April 20, 2010

CODEPINK releases opinion piece on Rove becoming unglued on book tour

“Karl Rove is getting so used to life as a criminal on the run that he has collected enough material for a more appropriately-named sequel.”

April 20, 2010

Westlake Mall, Ohio: Four CODEPINK women call out Rove at his book signing. Police keep them far from Rove as security builds.

April 22, 2010

Minneapolis, MN: Activists protested Rove.

April 23, 2010

Charlotte, NC: Message from Linda Bollag on her Citizen's Arrest attempt:

"You have probably heard from Elain Cahn by now. We were harassed by the Simon Mall Security and shoppers--Not even ones who were going to get his stupid book signed. Then the Mall nazis had the CMPD come over to make us move again and to give us a talking to."

April 27, 2010

Birmingham, AL: Karl Rove, former top political adviser to former President George W. Bush, today strongly denied he had any role in the investigation and eventual conviction of former Gov. Don Siegelman on corruption charges. Some signs read "Investigate Karl Rove/ Free Don" Another one read "Rove is the one who should be in prison."

As some fans of Rove made their way out of the mall, they were shouted at by some of the protesters, who yelled at them "She's got a book signed by a crook." Frank Matthews, former aide to now-imprisoned former Birmingham Mayor Larry Langford, led the chants.

May 1, 2010

Albuquerque, New Mexico: Josie Lenwell and supporters stage a citizens arrest with pink fluffy handcuffs and arrest warrant. One CODEPINKer gets a photos with Karl while holding up his book with a sign reading “War Criminal” with arrow pointing at Karl.

May 3 , 2010

Richardson, Texas: Four CODEPINK Dallas women staged protest with large pink glasses calling out Rove's spying and outing of Plame. The man interviewing Rove on stage referenced the protesters and their charge of “war criminal” in his questions to Rove

May 10, 2010

Sacramento, CA: CODEPINK Arrests Karl Rove in Sacramento May 10, 2010

May 20, 2010

Franklin, TN: CODEPINK activists and allies in Tennessee served Rove an arrest warrant, handcuffs, shouts about his crimes, and unfurled a banner at his book signing.

May 23, 2010

Mequon, WI: When Karl Rove came to Mequon to promote his new book at Next Chapter Bookstore on Sunday, May 23rd, Mequon area activist family Natalia Hacerola, Isaac Hacerola, and Anne Aiello staged a citizens arrest, dangling handcuffs and an arrest warrant in front of Mr. Rove. Immediately before throwing the arrest warrant on the ground, Rove asked the activists why the handcuffs were plastic and Natalia replied, "It's safer that way." These activists and many concerned citizens feel they will be safer when Rove is tried for his crimes and behind bars.