San Diegans Join Thousands Across Nation in Rejecting Coverup and Trump’s ‘Acquittal’

by on February 6, 2020 · 0 comments

in San Diego

Wednesday, Feb. 5, local San Diegans joined thousands of others across the country in more than 200 protests of the coverup and Trump’s acquittal.

The San Diego chapter of Indivisible mobilized people at several street corners, and about 40 demonstrators showed up at the corner of Sixth and University avenues in Hillcrest, the SanDiegoUnion-Tribune reported. A steady stream of supportive honking from drivers flowed by. The group chanted slogans such as “sham trial, not above the law” and “come November, we will remember.”

There were other protests including one on North Harbor Drive. The U-T quoted several at the Hillcrest rally:

 Nancy Cottingham, 70, of San Diego, is an organizer with Indivisible. She said people came out because they believe Trump “got away with something terrible.”  “If you make these decisions about what is okay, then there will be a president in the future that will violate (the law) even further,” Cottingham said.

Katie Grogan, 32, of San Diego, said Wednesday’s demonstration was her first protest. She said she felt it was time to “get her voice out there.”  “I wanted to contribute some way to making sure justice is served in our country,” she said. “I want to do my part.”  Grogan said she expected the Senate result but was surprised by Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, who broke with his fellow Republicans and voted to convict Trump on the abuse of power charge. “I’m proud of him for doing that,” she said. “I wish more Republicans would have done that, but they don’t want to convict a guilty person.”

Blue pins signify Reject the Coverup protests, Feb. 5, 2020.

Joanne Britton, 69, of San Diego, said she thought what Trump was convicted of in the House — charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress — was worse that what President Richard M. Nixon was accused of during the Watergate scandal.   “Trying to extort and blackmail a vulnerable ally in Ukraine is so much worse than what Nixon did trying to manipulate elections domestically,” she said. “(Then), Republicans stood up and said, ‘We can’t allow this.’ And now, the Republican Party does everything they can to make Trump king.”

Right outside the Capitol, hundreds gathered, where Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) declared, “I will focus my ire on Senate Republicans. Shame on you, Mitch McConnell.”

Inside the building, about 50 people held a sit-in, “Trump is guilty!” they chanted, and also, “honor your oaths, “Trump is guilty,” and “we know this is a cover-up,” for several minutes before being arrested and removed by Capitol Police. Ten people were arrested.

One demonstrator, Sara Anzalone, told USA Today she believes “getting a foreign power to interfere with our country is just completely against the Constitution and completely out of his power. And I really think that he should be held responsible, and it really kind of makes me pissed off that he could have been held accountable today.”

Across the nation, thousands of demonstrators attended “Reject the Cover-Up” protests on Wednesday evening, after the Senate impeachment trial ended with President Trump’s acquittal.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported:

Dozens of protesters rallied at Market and Powell streets in San Francisco Wednesday afternoon to protest the acquittal of President Trump, accusing the GOP of a cover-up.   Activists with community organization Indivisible SF organized the gathering to protest Trump, who was acquitted Wednesday by the Senate of both impeachment charges of abusing his power and obstruction of Congress.

Some protesters pulled black handkerchiefs over their eyes, others pulled knitted pink caps over their heads, and chanted, “Move Trump, get out the way, get out the way, Trump, get out the way,” to the beat of a Ludacris song. One woman dressed in a red cape and white bonnet, the style of enslaved women in Margaret Atwood’s dystopian book, “The Handmaid’s Tale.”

Theresa Kaviani, of Lafayette, wore a green khaki jacket with the phrase, “I do care, and you should to” in white lettering — a response to the jacket First Lady Melania Trump wore the day she visited a shelter for migrant children near the Texas border.
“I heard them reading out the verdict and I think this country has allowed our democracy to die, I really do,” Kaviani said through tears, her voice breaking. “I think it’s emotional whenever a criminal is acquitted.”

Paul Hazell, and his husband, Graham Cruiskshank, both 52 of Richmond, thrust handmade caricatures of US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Trump in the air and listened to speakers take turns at the microphone near the cable car turnaround, joining in on chants of, “Vote him out.”

 In Boston, protesters praised Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah), the former governor of Massachusetts. He was the only Republican to vote “guilty” on the abuse of power charge, and one protester carried a sign that read, “Thanks, Mitt! Now let’s censure.”

Nationally, a bipartisan collection of activist groups, including Stand Up America, Women’s March, By the People and Common Cause were some of the major organizers. Also Greenpeace and Sierra Club, along with Stand Up Republic, a right-leaning anti-Trump group, are involved. Locally, as noted, Indivisible San Diego was one of the main mobilizers.

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