Sources on Capitol Hill tell Big Government that SEIU has organized a major effort to ‘Take Back the Capitol’ this week with a collective of community, labor and Occupy groups that are dedicated to “show Congress what democracy looks like, shine a light on corporate greed and the human suffering it has caused, and demand justice for the 99%.”
According to Congressional sources, Occupy protestors have been visiting one Congressional office after another and demanding to speak with representatives while loitering in their waiting rooms and chanting. ‘Trackers’ are also being spotted roaming the hills of various Congressional buildings.
Joanna Burgos, Deputy Communications Director for the National Republican Congressional Committee described the trackers as, “people with cameras who are trying to track a member or politician on a certain issue. Its just part of the videos you see used all the time. I think their goal is to get them to say something on camera or say something. They tape a lot of their protests and put them on YouTube.”
Some of those videos have already been posted at a site for Think Progress, which describes itself as nonpartisan organization, but was voted the “Best Liberal Blog,” in the 2006 Weblog Awards.
One Think Progress piece posted at 1:57 pm today featured video of protestors occupying U.S. Representative Joe Walsh’s (R-IL) office, reporting that, “These protesters asked to meet with the congressman. The Chief of Staff, Justin Roth, said that Walsh was busy and could only meet with them later but offered to meet with the protesters himself. ‘”I think we’ll stay,”‘ said one protester. Roth shrugged and the protesters sat down and decided to occupy the office until Walsh arrives.”
Sgt. Kimberly Schneider told Big Government that although they’ve been “monitoring more activity on the Hill today then yesterday,” there has only been one arrest.
“There were no arrests yesterday and there was only one arrest today, and that was for unlawful entry – they refused to leave an office when asked to.” Schneider said the arrest occurred in Room 1023 of the Longworth House Office Building, which Capitol telephone operators say is used by U.S. Representative Vicki Hartzler (MO-R).
According to a PDF of an online itinerary, SEIU has established a weekly schedule for the protestors, having them “set up camp” on Monday, “take back the House,” on Tuesday on Capitol Hill, “make Wall Street pay,” Wednesday, which entails protesting corporate offices in downtown Washington, D.C., and Thursday, “a call for Justice for the 99%” which will involve a vigil being held to extend unemployment insurance compensation benefits.
One Congressional staffer on the U.S House side told Big Government that some of the protestors were moving from office to office chanting, and others “were just chilling.”