Bernie Supporters To Flood Democratic National Convention In Protest

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Progressive activists plan on rallying for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) during next month’s Democratic National Convention, according to a new report.

Activists will focus on corporate influence and reforming the Democratic Party’s presidential nominating process, CNN reported.

“If the Democratic Party wants to put on a $50 million infomercial saying, ‘Hey, vote for us,’ without making this the last corrupt, billionaire-nominated, voter-suppression-marred election, then we’re going to crash the party,” said Kai Newkirk, the director of Democracy Spring, a coalition that fights big money in politics.

Newkirk on Wednesday said Democracy Spring is “hardcore committed to non-violent discipline” during its events. He added his group last weekend staged a protester-training seminar during a “People’s Summit” in Chicago.

CNN on Wednesday reported the event was attended by former Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner (D), a prominent Sanders surrogate.

Turner reportedly told attendees she expects “hundreds of thousands of people out there” amid July’s convention in Philadelphia.

“That’s America — we are about the protest,” she said. “We are about having a righteous indignation. We can no longer stand by and have business as usual.”

CNN said last weekend’s summit featured a series of exercises and lectures titled “Direct Action 101” in preparation for the protest. The learning experiences included mock arrests, a run-through a “police gauntlet” and methods for keeping demonstrations civil.

“We talked about de-escalation and what happens for people in that moment when you’re facing a line of riot cops and feel yourself getting scared or anxious,” said Kim Huynh, a Houston-based organizer who helped lead the workshop. “How do you support someone else who is feeling like that?”

Newkirk said Democracy Spring will “generally try to communicate with law enforcement and to respond if they reach out.” He added the group does not “generally negotiate” its demonstrations beforehand, however.

Sanders has repeatedly vowed to remain in the Democratic presidential primary through the Democratic National Convention in late July.

Hillary Clinton earlier this month crossed the 2,382-delegate threshold necessary to clinch the party’s presidential nomination.

(via: The Hill)

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