The Ku Klux Klan chapter whose application to adopt a one-mile stretch of north Georgia highway was rejected has appealed for legal assistance from the American Civil Liberties Union.

Should the group ultimately pursue a challenge to the state’s transportation department, the International Keystone Knights will be represented in court by the ACLU of Georgia.

An ACLU spox said while it is the organization’s preference to solve disputes short of litigation, it was prepared to take the state to court “if that’s what’s necessary” to project the first amendment.

“The government can’t say because what you have to say is obnoxious and offensive to other people in the community you may not participate in a program that is open to all civic-minded organizations,” Debbie Seagraves told Atlanta public radio WABE.

Strange political bedfellows the two, but the ACLU has has assisted assisted a number of white supremacist groups in his 92-year history. In 2004 it defended a Klan-linked group in Missouri, locked in a similar dispute with that state’s adopt-a-highway program, all the way to the Supreme Court.

– James Richardson