Opponents to Donald Trump’s presidency are planning large-scale demonstrations in the nation’s capital in January when the Republican president-elect is sworn in on Inauguration Day, with police apparently expecting tens-of-thousands of protesters.
Trump’s surprise win Tuesday over Democratic rival Hillary Clinton has already sparked smaller protests across the county. However, demonstrations being planned for Inauguration Day weekend, which includes the Jan. 20 swearing-in on Capitol Hill, have the potential to be much larger.
One protest is being organized by the group ANSWER, for Act Now to Stop War & End Racism.
The group’s Facebook page announcing its “Protest at the Inauguration: Stand Against Trump, War, Racism and Inequality” event on Saturday showed that nearly 7,000 people have already committed to attending and 24,000 more have expressing interest in the event.
A Metropolitan Police Department officer said Friday that officers have already been briefed about the proposed demonstration and to prepare for at least 30,000 protesters.
An MPD spokesman on Saturday declined to discuss the matter, saying the agency doesn’t talk about “deploying resources.”
He also suggested that the event was too far off to provide specifics but added the agency will “plan accordingly.”
And a pro-Clinton group named “RoaRR 4 Hillary” is planning a “Million Women March” on Jan. 21.
ANSWER, started roughly 15 years ago, after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks, and has the potential to attract hundreds of thousands of protesters.
In January 2013, the group led an antiwar protest that it says brought 200,000 people to Washington, D.C. And two months later, ANSWER helped organize a similar worldwide event that is considered the biggest anti-war protest in history.
Trump was criticized during his historic outsider campaign for comments about women and illegal Mexican immigrants and for his proposal after recent terror attacks connected to radical Islamists to temporarily ban Muslims trying to enter the United States.
Already this week, a man was shot in Portland, Oregon, when he got into a confrontation with a protester.
Portland police said the person who was shot was taken to a hospital for treatment of injuries that were not life-threatening. Police said they were looking for the shooter, who apparently fled in his vehicle after the attack early Saturday morning.
The shooting followed rowdy Friday night protests, when police used tear gas in response to “burning projectiles” thrown at officers, police said on Twitter. Hundreds of people marched through the city, disrupting traffic and spray-painting graffiti.
Authorities reported instances of vandalism and assault during a rally that organizers had billed as peaceful earlier in the day.
In other parts of the country, spirited demonstrations on college campuses and peaceful marches along downtown streets have taken place since Wednesday. In Washington, protesters burn at least one U.S. flag, which resulted in confrontation with a military veteran.
And people continue to protest at Trump’s new luxury hotel in Washington, Trump International, just blocks from the White House.
A mainly peaceful protest by about 3,000 people ended in Los Angeles early Saturday with about 200 arrests for failure to disperse after police broke up the lingering demonstration.
Hundreds joined a Friday afternoon “love rally” in Washington Square Park in Manhattan.
Evening marches disrupted traffic in Miami and Atlanta.
Trump supporter Nicolas Quirico was traveling from South Beach to Miami. His car was among hundreds stopped when protesters blocked Interstate 395.
“Trump will be our president. There is no way around that, and the sooner people grasp that, the better off we will be,” he said. “There is a difference between a peaceful protest and standing in a major highway backing up traffic for 5 miles. This is wrong.”
More than a thousand protesters took to the streets across California after night fell including downtown Los Angeles, where over 200 were arrested a night earlier. In Bakersfield, where Trump is far more popular than in most of the state, some held signs reading “Anti-Trump, Pro-USA.”
Small protests also were held in Detroit; Minneapolis; Kansas City, Missouri; Olympia, Washington and Iowa City.
More than 200 people, carrying signs gathered on the steps of the Washington state Capitol. The group chanted “not my president” and “no Trump, no KKK, no fascist USA.”
In Tennessee, Vanderbilt University students sang civil rights songs and marched through campus across a Nashville street, temporarily blocking traffic. A protest also occurred in Minneapolis.
In Chicago, multiple groups planned protests through Saturday.
Ashley Lynne Nagel, 27, said she joined a Thursday night demonstration in Denver.
“I have a leader I fear for the first time in my life,” said Nagel, a Bernie Sanders supporter who voted for Hillary Clinton.
“It’s not that we’re sore losers,” she said. “It’s that we are genuinely upset, angry, terrified that a platform based off of racism, xenophobia and homophobia has become so powerful and now has complete control of our representation.”
Demonstrations also were planned Saturday in Las Vegas, Los Angeles and other areas.
Previous demonstrations drew thousands of people in New York and other large urban centers. The largely peaceful demonstrations were overshadowed by sporadic episodes of vandalism, violence and street-blocking.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.