Entries in Occupy (6)


Christine O’Donnell to Stage Tea Party vs. Occupy Debate in Tampa

Win McNamee/Getty Images(TAMPA, Fla.) -- Christine O’Donnell is looking to make some trouble in Tampa, Fla.

The former Republican U.S. Senate candidate from Delaware will host a five-day event dubbed Troublemaker Fest at an IMAX theater two blocks from the Tampa Bay Times Forum, where the Republican National Convention will be held.

Her event, slated for Aug. 26-30, will overlap with the Aug. 27-30 GOP convention.

While details have yet to be released and are still being hashed out, O’Donnell plans to host a debate between panelists from the Tea Party and Occupy movements, representing the opposite ends of America’s current political spectrum.

O’Donnell made waves in the Republican Party and earned national headlines in 2010 for her victory in Delaware’s GOP Senate primary, when she defeated GOP Rep. Mike Castle, a nine-term House member who had been favored to win. O’Donnell lost to Democrat Chris Coons, who now serves as Delaware’s junior senator.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Santorum Squares Off with Occupy Protesters in Washington State

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(TACOMA, Wash.) -- Rick Santorum's rally in Tacoma, Wash., Monday evening was interrupted by Occupy protesters, but the candidate didn't back down.

Santorum had to shout over about a dozen protesters, who have their camp set up in a park adjacent to the amphitheater. The GOP hopeful said they represent a “radical element.”

“I think it’s really important for you to understand what this radical element represents,” he said to the cheering crowd of about 350 people. “Because what they represent is true intolerance.”

The former Pennsylvania senator compared the protesters to the recent decision by a U.S. Appeals court in California that ruled the state’s ban on same sex marriage unconstitutional.

“That’s what the 9th circuit said when they handed down the decision striking down Proposition 8.  What they said was that anybody who disagreed with them were irrational and the only reason they could possibly agree is they were a hater or a bigot,” Santorum said.  “Now I gotta tell you.  I don’t agree with these people but I respect their opportunity to be able to have a different point of view and I don’t think they’re a hater or a bigot because they disagree with me.”

The protesters shouted, “We are the 99 percent,” and some of the Santorum supporters chanted back, “USA!” all creating a chaotic atmosphere, but the candidate stayed on message even when the two sides got into a scuffle.  Tacoma Police dragged out and cuffed two of the occupiers, but left the rest of the group there, who continued to try to stifle Santorum's speech.

After the event, another protester directly "glitter-bombed" Santorum, and she was arrested as well.  This is at least the sixth time Santorum has been doused with glitter at an event, but Monday evening was probably the most direct hit.  The GOP chairman thanked Santorum for coming and apologized for the glitter incident.

Sgt. Paul Jagodinski of the Tacoma Police Department confirmed that three people were arrested at the rally.

At one point during the 45-minute event, the crowd started chanting, “Get a job!” to the group of protesters and it was then that the candidate took the opportunity to try and empathize with the movement, although he also called them “intolerant and disrespectful.”

“You realize that there is a group in society that is being left behind.  There’s a group, about one in three Americans don’t graduate from high school, and almost all of them, over three quarters of them, will end up in poverty at some point in time in this country.  We’ve got to provide an opportunity for them, instead of standing here unemployed yelling at somebody, to go out and get a job and work for a living!” Santorum said before pausing while both sides screamed at each other.  “I understand their frustration, for three years they haven’t been able to find work, they have a president who doesn’t care about them.”

Santorum criticized President Obama and accused him of encouraging the movement, saying Obama is “trying to divide America into one percentage versus another percentage. That’s not what a leader of this country should do but Barack Obama has sided with the 99 versus one.”

“He supported this movement, this movement that is intolerant and disrespectful. He supported them and embraced them,” Santorum said to loud cheers from his supporters. “Why?  Because it’s consistent with exactly what Barack Obama’s trying to do with this country.”

He also criticized the president’s budget, which he released Monday morning, calling it “another tax the rich scheme.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


‘Occupy the Courts’ Descends on the Supreme Court

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call(WASHINGTON) -- Protesters descended on the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday as part of the nationwide effort that Occupy Wall Street has dubbed “Occupy the Courts.” The rallies at courthouses around the country were to challenge a 2010 Supreme Court decision that largely removed limits on union and corporate spending in support of political campaigns.

Roughly 100 protesters gathered outside the Supreme Court steps touting signs with slogans such as “Corporations are not People” and “We are the 99 percent.”

Shouting, “Whose steps? Our steps!” the rally then moved to a grassy park between the court and the U.S. Capitol, where organizers spoke from a prepared stage. Medea Benjamin of Code Pink was among the speakers at the event. At one point a choir of demonstrators dressed as Supreme Court justices sang, mocking the judiciary’s record on campaign finance.

The rallies were orchestrated around the two-year anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. The high court’s decision in that case set a precedent that would eventually lead to the legality of Super PACs, private entities that can raise money for political campaigns without the restraints normally applied to candidates under campaign finance law.

No more than a few hundred gathered at each location throughout the country, a far cry from the thousands predicted by its organizers. In New York City protesters were denied a permit to demonstrate at the federal courthouse, forcing them to relocate to nearby Foley Square.

Some events around the country saw clashes with local authorities. At Washington’s Supreme Court rally, 11 were arrested after demonstrators dismantled a police barricade before rushing the court plaza and steps. One was arrested inside the building for unlawful entry. At least a dozen were arrested in San Francisco after protesters refused to break a human chain around the Wells Fargo headquarters. San Francisco police say all arrests were for alleged trespassing.

The national demonstrations were organized by a grassroots group, Move to Amend. Partnered with Occupy Wall Street, the organization is also circulating petitions in several cities calling for a resolution to abolish corporate personhood.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Protesters Surround Santorum and Family After Final NH Pitch

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call(MANCHESTER, N.H.) -- Rick Santorum had his final rally Monday night before Granite Staters start voting Tuesday morning in the first-in-the-nation primary.

Supporters and press mobbed the candidate as he made his way around the packed restaurant and bar. As he exited his final primary eve event, he was surrounded by a mix of protesters from the Occupy movement and Ron Paul supporters.

As he walked out of Jillian’s in downtown Manchester, his staff surrounded him and the protesters tried to form a circle around the former Pennsylvania senator. They chanted, “Bigot, bigot!” and “Shame, shame!” as he made his way to his car.

Police and security were on hand and during the crush one member of the candidate’s entourage got shoved to the ground, as did one of the protesters.

Santorum smiled as he walked the short distance from the restaurant, but a serious scuffle ensued, and his wife Karen had a frightened look on her face. Two of his children, Elizabeth and Daniel, followed closely behind. His other children, including his 3-year-old daughter Bella, who has a rare genetic condition, are already in South Carolina.

Just minutes before, he gave his closing pitch to supporters, telling them this may be his “ending rally” in New Hampshire, but promised to be back “in the fall as the nominee.”

“This is your moment,” he told New Hampshire voters, before railing into the president.

“If Barack Obama is re-elected, America as we know it will be gone,” Santorum said. “We will be a country that is no longer independent.”

He asked supporters to “go out and vote for someone” who believes in the state motto, “Live Free or Die.”

“This president does not believe and establishment Republicans don’t believe much of it either,” Santorum told the crowd of about 150. “‘You are the ‘Live Free or Die’ state; tomorrow prove it. Go out and vote for someone who believes in that motto … and you will shake up not just this country but this world.”

He said earlier Monday that he would be “ecstatic” with a number-two showing Tuesday, but polling has both Mitt Romney and Ron Paul ahead of him in the state.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Romney, Christie Clash with Occupy Protesters at NH Rally

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(EXETER, N.H.) -- At a New Hampshire rally meant to be all about boosting support for Mitt Romney, protesters instead took center stage on Sunday, evoking colorful responses from both Romney and his outspoken surrogate, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who at one time referred to one of the protesters as “sweetheart.”

“Really?” said Christie, as soon as protesters interrupted him -- the second outburst of the night from the group, who had already gone after Romney.  “You know, something may go down tonight, but it ain’t going to be jobs, sweetheart.”

“See it’s this confusion that’s out there because if she was in New Jersey like these Jersey girls out there she would know that we’ve created 60,000 new private sector jobs after Jon Corzine killed 120,000,” Christie said.  “And if she wasn’t so blinded by her Barack Obama-induced anger, she’d know that American jobs are coming back when Mitt Romney is the next president of the United States, and if she wasn’t so disorientated by the loss of hope and change she’d understand that Mitt Romney is the hope for America’s future.”

Christie continued on, going further to blame the protester’s anger on Obama.

“See, beware, this is a warning, this is a cautionary tale, be inspired by someone who has built a life that America can be proud of, not by a Chicago ward politician,” Christie said.  “I doubt he is, but I hope the president’s watching.  I have a message for you Mr. President.  This is the type of disoriented anger your cynicism and your division is causing in our country.  Bring our country together, stop dividing it, Mr. President."

“On second thought, Mr. President, if you’re up there in the family quarters of the White House, put your feet up and don’t worry about it.  Mitt Romney’s going to bring America together,” Christie added.

The protesters, members of a local Occupy Wall Street contingent, had already disrupted Romney’s speech before Christie took the microphone.

Romney, who has dealt with protestors a few times now during his campaign events across the country, quickly shot back, “Oh, this is our regular crowd here.”

“We’re happy to have you guys express your views,” he said.  “Next time do it with more courtesy.”

But when Romney was approached again by protesters in the overflow room after the event, his patience seemed to have been worn thin.

As protestors yelled about who was to blame for the failing economy, Romney spun around on his heels, going back to address the crowd.

“You know what?” Romney said.  “This president has caused a deepening recession and is responsible for 25 million Americans being out of work or stopped working or not being able to get jobs, and let me tell you, this president’s been a failure and that’s one of the reasons I’m running is to help you get a job.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Occupy Protesters Arrested Outside Michele Bachmann Iowa Headquarters

ABC News(DES MOINES, Iowa) -- Ten people associated with Occupy protest movement were arrested outside the headquarters of GOP contender Michele Bachmann Saturday.

The protesters, who Bachmann suggested had come at the behest of President Obama, turned out moments before the Minnesota congresswoman was set to arrive to phone Iowans asking for their support in Tuesday’s first-in-the-nation caucus.

“The people outside are President Obama’s re-election advance team. That’s what you’re seeing outside. What they recognize is that I’m the greatest threat to Barack Obama’s re-election and I intend to be,” Bachmann told reporters after arriving at her offices.

According to spectators, there were a few dozen protests outside the building, located in strip mall here. Among those arrested were two teenagers, including a girl believed to be 14-years-old.

Bachmann, was set to make an entrance at the office by driving herself in the campaign’s large black pickup truck. When she received word about the protests she pulled into a parking lot nearby and waited.

When asked by ABC News why she was not making her way to headquarters, she replied from driver’s side of the truck: “We’re getting ready to go. They’re trying to get everyone assembled. We’ll be there in about a minute.”

Later she tried to outrun and shake ABC News and two print reporters who had followed the truck from an event in Des Moines, where she lunched with an undecided voter for a local television news piece.

Bachmann arrived at her headquarters, entering through a backdoor.

There, she was mobbed by volunteers – many of them students bused in from her out of state alma mater, Oral Roberts University – bypassing any residual protesters and police in the front of the building.

Protesters were also seen at the headquarters of contenders Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry.

Hundreds of protesters from across the country are expected to arrived in Des Moines on Jan. 3, the night of the caucus, to disrupt the candidates and caucus -going.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio