On Saturday, LD23 Senate Dem candidate Christine Lui Chen, speaking at anti-Trump rally, Bedminster
Yesterday, at a rally down the road from the Trump National Golf Course, where the U.S. Women’s Open is ongoing, anti-Trump protesters, who’ve been rallying there for months, were attacked by pro-Trump people. Some of those Trump fans – wearing red #MAGA hats, bullet-proof vests and carrying gigantic American flags – drove in from long-distance elsewheres to get to here in Bedminster, NJ, where the President is holding court as some of the finest golfers in the country play his course.
Having a women’s championship at the golf course of such a man is absurd. There was plenty of protest on the location, but the USGA (HQ’d in New Jersey) didn’t budge. The Trump family is going to make a lot of money off this; also offensive.
So back to yesterday. There’s a ‘designated free speech zone’ on a busy intersection near the course. For months, a caravan of cars has driven past the Trump entrance, often rallying at the field set up by a nearby library afterward; the ‘free speech zone’. Yesterday, 47 cars took part in the ‘People’s Motorcade’ joined by the anti-sexism group UltraViolet; then they all went to rally at the zone.
So did the Trump people. Here are the incidents I know about:
SARA: What happened to Sara Erlich was documented by Philly.com. A group of pro-Trump people were trying to disrupt the ant-Trump rally. When the last protest speaker, Working Families’ Lou Di Paolo, called for our people to go to the fences ringing the area so traffic could see their signs, 65-year-old Sara Erlich found a space between a pro-Trump woman and one of the 7 men wearing an Oath Keepers shirt (you need to know about them). The woman thought Sara was in her way, so Oath Keeper Chip Murray, 64, suddenly stepped in and pulled Sara’s sign – which she was holding – backwards, and she was falling backwards. So she bit him to get him off her. That worked. No blood was drawn. Oath Keepers aren’t too good at recognizing the power of government, but Murray “yelped” and “scurried” over to the police to tell on the woman with the bad knee he just tried to knock over. Oath Keepers like to come armed, like they did when they inserted themselves into Ferguson. Apparently were not armed yesterday, but some men there were wearing bullet-proof vests. Murray’s not a local, he drove all the way from Orange County, New York.
LOU: Lou Di Paolo, legislative director for Working Families New Jersey, was assaulted trying to block a Trump fan from getting to Jim Girvan of Bedminster, the organizer of these weekly Motorcades and rallies.
FLAG AS WEAPON: A Trump supporter poured water on someone on our side, then hit him with the pole of a big flag he was carrying.
STACEY: She reports a pro-Trump woman shoved a sign she had in her hands into her chest, then pushed her. Stacey alerted someone she thought was police, but that turned out to be one of the guys in a bullet-proof vest. The actual police didn’t witness that incident, and told her she’d have to press charges herself because they didn’t see it. Things died down after Stacey warned the woman there’d be charges filed if she touched her – or anyone – again.
I also have to mention that among the rally speakers were both the women legislative candidates running in LD-23, which includes Bedminster. Usually, the Dems treat that overwhelmingly Republican district as a throwaway. Can’t totally blame them for that. This year, though, Christine Liu Chen is running for Senate (against Mike Doherty) and Laura Shaw is running for Assembly (with running mate Charles Boddy). They’re fierce, they’re very active, and very impressive. Please check them out and consider donating. They’re really shaking it up.
Today, anti-Trump women and men are at the U.S. Women’s Open – with tickets. I’ll have photos next. Below, one of the more respectful moments in an otherwise contentious day yesterday. This is what I like to see, when we can get it: