In the first of what demonstrators promise will be a regular Tuesday lunchtime activity, New Yorkers came out in the rain outside Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gilliibrand’s New York district offices at 780 3rd Avenue to demand that they oppose Trump’s cabinet nominees—all of them.
The rain fell but the chants flowed from what looked like several hundred people: “Senator Schumer, You’re a mensch, We need you to be the wrench!”
Mary Sweeney of Forest Hills, and an attorney working in midtown Manhattan, said she signed up through MoveOn.org and came out on her lunch hour to join, wearing a poncho. “We are trying to voice to Senator Gillibrand and Senator Schumer, who are our senators, our demand that they reject Trump’s nominees, because the policy they want to implement was rejected by majority of the voters.”
Along with MoveOn, event organizers included Indivisible, Working Families, Rise & Resist, and 350, all promoting a #ResistTrumpTuesdays campaign that plans to protest every week. Also present and distributing pamphlets were members from a group calling itself Refuse Fascism and members of Food and Water Watch, which was organizing a volunteer meeting the at the New York Society for Ethical Culture on Tuesday evening.
Elizabeth May from Brooklyn was a participant and also served as a spokesperson for an artist friend who was dressed as Lady Justice, carrying a placard that asked, “Where is the Justice?” “I am here to tell them we do not want them to support any of Trump’s nominees,” May said. “These people do not represent our values or views.”
“We will remember in November,” chanted the protestors.
The messages on some placards went beyond the cabinet picks and touched on gun violence and education, among other things. Some brought letters that they had written to the senators. The protesters specifically mentioned Trump’s picks of Rex Tillerson (Secretary of State), Jeff Sessions (Attorney General), Betsy DeVos (Education), John Kelly (Homeland Security), Ben Carson (Housing and Urban Development), Steven Mnuchin (Treasury), Andrew Puzder (Labor), and Tom Price (Health and Human Services).
J.M. Zervoulei of the East Village said he couldn’t support any of Trump’s cabinet picks—“Every single one of them,” he said. “It’s like a one percenter party. It’s like a Goldman Sach’s retreat.”