On June 28, left-wing activists organized a protest outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., to oppose President Trump’s nomination of a conservative justice in the wake of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement from the court next month.
Capital Research Center’s Hayden Ludwig was present to cover the protest, which included a bevy of groups from the professional Left. CRC identified activist Anisha Singh—senior organizing director at Generation Progress, a Center for American Progress (CAP)-sponsored advocacy group—as the event’s leading organizer. CAP is a left-of-center think tank created in 2003 by Clinton operative John Podesta and heavily funded by liberal billionaire George Soros.
Embattled CAP president Neera Tanden, a former Obama administration official, was one of the speakers. “It’s been a hard week, hasn’t it?” Tanden told the crowd. “But what are we going to show them? We’re going to show them, when they push us down, we fight back harder.”
Besides CAP, organizers from the Alliance for Justice (AFJ), People for the American Way (PFAW), and Demand Justice—groups with a track record of running activist campaigns to oppose conservatives and champion left-wing judiciary nominees—were also present. AFJ and PFAW played critical roles in successfully opposing the nomination of D.C. Circuit Court Judge Robert Bork in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan, and they continued their activism—this time unsuccessfully—against the nomination of Justice Samuel Alito by President George W. Bush in 2005. Demand Justice, the newest of the three groups, was created last year in opposition to President Trump’s nomination of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.
Demand Justice executive director Brian Fallon also spoke before the crowd, saying: “This is the biggest fight of the Donald Trump presidency…. If Donald Trump is successful in confirming his next nominee to the Supreme Court, we will be living with the stain of Trumpism—not for 4 years, not for 8 years, but for 40 years.”
They say that we can’t change things, that we don’t have the votes, that we can’t stop Mitch McConnell… that’s not true! All we have to do is unite our 49 Democrats [in the Senate] and get one—one!—Republican to agree to vote no.
CRC also identified the following organizations present at the protest:
- NARAL Pro-Choice America
- National Education Association (NEA)
- Planned Parenthood Federation of America
- League of Conservation Voters & CHISPA (LCV’s Latino affiliate)
- Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
- Feminist Majority
- National LGBTQ Task Force
- National Women’s Law Center
- National Partnership for Women and Families
- Lambda Legal
Supporters from the Sierra Club and the People’s Climate Movement were also present. Speakers at the protest included Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York), Cory Booker (D-New Jersey), Kamala Harris (D-California), Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts), and Ed Markey (D-Massachusetts).
CRC also uncovered a list of the full lineup of speakers invited by the protest organizers. That list (including non-attendants) includes:
|Tiernan Sittenfeld||League of Conservation Voters||Senior Vice President of Government Affairs|
|Sasha Buchert||Lambda Legal||Staff Attorney|
|Kristine Lucius||The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights||Executive Vice President|
|Sen. Richard Blumenthal|
|Sen. Richard [sic]* Murphy|
|Tiffany Muller||End Citizens United||President and Executive Director|
|Karine Jean-Pierre||MoveOn.org||Senior Advisor|
|Judy Lichtman||National Partnership for Women and Families||Senior Advisor|
|Diallo Brookes||People for the American Way||Senior Director of Outreach and Partnerships|
|Michele Jawando||American Progress and Center for American Progress Action Fund||Vice President|
|Anna Chu||National Women’s Law Center||Vice President|
|Carol Tyson||Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF)||Government Affairs Liason|
|Jason Walta||National Education Association||Senior Counsel|
|Kristen Clarke||National Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights||President and Executive Director|
* Although the organizers’ program read “Sen. Richard Murphy,” Christopher Murphy is currently the junior Senator from Connecticut.