Protest of President’s Ban on Muslims Spreads to Capitol Hill
by Larry Janezich
A rally against Donald Trump’s executive order targeting all refugees as well as immigrants from 7 predominantly Muslim countries which was held in Lafayette Park today, ended up on the East Front of the U.S. Capitol. To have this large a demonstration occur on the Capitol Grounds without a permit is nearly unprecedented, and was likely permitted by US Capitol Police only because it was Sunday, and few or no legislators were in the building.
About 2:45pm, a group protestors started moving through the crowd, claiming to be organizers, and announcing that they were marching to the Capitol. Since this had the appearance of a spontaneous movement, it is unlikely that a permit had been obtained. Perhaps half of the 8 – 10 thousand protestors (my totally subjective rough estimate) ended up at the Capitol, marching down Pennsylvania Avenue, totally filling the street. Near the Capitol, the marchers were diverted to Louisiana Avenue toward Union Station, which worked at first, until a group well back in the march broke away from the others, with cries of “Up the hill” and headed straight up Constitution Avenue and on to the Capitol Grounds.
Peace for Iran, which bills itself as a group of international volunteers, announced the “No Muslim Ban” rally yesterday, calling for supporters to rally from 1 – 3pm today at Lafayette Park, across from the White House.