‘Embarrassing’: May Day Protest Falls 85% Short of Expectations

Los Angeles May Day protest (Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)
Jae C. Hong / Associated Press

Organizers of Monday’s May Day march in downtown Los Angeles had hoped for 100,000 demonstrators to join them in yet another march against President Donald Trump, but only 15,000 showed up.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the protest was “tame”:

Crowds were relatively modest compared to last year, and the LAPD’s strategy of big numbers but minimal interaction appeared to work. Police formed a line on Spring Street that divided pro- and anti-Trump supporters. Insults, and apparently a few plastic bottles, were thrown, but both sides kept the peace.

By midafternoon, authorities estimated that about 15,000 had gathered in downtown Los Angeles, far less than the 100,000-plus they had predicted.

Organizers later put the crowd total at 30,000, but the low numbers were frustrating, said Elizabeth Cordova, 38, who marched the rally route with her mother and husband. “It’s kind of like embarrassing, because this is our biggest chance to make a difference and to show the government we are not alone.”

There was a small counter-demonstration, staged by a few dozen supporters of President Trump (also far below organizers’ hopes of 200,000), called the “March for America.” One left-wing protester against that demonstration was arrested for arson, according to the Los Angeles Daily News, after burning an American flag.

Protests around the nation were similarly modest.

In the Bay Area, “tens of thousands” marched in various cities throughout the region, according to the San Jose Mercury News, which interviewed one man draped in a Mexican flag: “Who’s going to wash all these rich people’s cars when we’re not around? Who’s going to bus their tables?”

The only serious violence on the West Coast during May Day marches appeared to be in Portland, where some marchers attacked police with smoke bombs.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

Correction: an earlier version of this post inadvertently substituted “Oakland” for “Portland.”


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