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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Democracy March Draws Hundreds, U.S. Legislators

By James Lomuscio

From Jesup Green to Veterans Green, today’s March to DefenDemocracy drew hundreds brandishing myriad anti-President Trump placards, a show of force from Democrats.

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March organizer Darcy Hicks addresses today’s Veterans Greens rally as fellow organizers Nita Prasad, Lauren Soloff, and Lisa Bowman look on.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

Unabashed, they appeared energized by Friday’s Trumpcare defeat, and they were cheered on at Veterans Green by U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, and state Rep. Jonathan Steinberg, all Democrats, as well as by Republican First Selectman Jim Marpe.

DefenDemocracy was co-founded by Westporters Darcy Hicks, Lauen Soloff, Lisa Bowman and Nita Prasad, and the event drew support from Westport’s Democratic Town Committee (DTC).

“We founded this right after the march,” Hicks said referring to women’s Washington, D.C. march protesting the election and inauguration of President Donald J. Trump. “The reason for today is to unite the community and all the grassroots groups that have formed since the election to defend our democracy.

“It’s clearly a partisan group, but we are a very civil town that has tried to find common ground, and we are happy to talk,” she added.

Among the signs displayed were: “Trump Sucks,” “Dump the Trump,” “Nyet Trump; “Not Mein Furher” and “You’re Fired.”

“I think we’ve had enough of Trump,” said Redding resident Lucy Tancredi holding a “No More Years” sign. “It means no more years of him. Impeachment would be the way to go.”

Like dozens of other women at the rally, Tancredi sported a pink, pointy-eared stocking cap, the same kind of double entendre feline hat worn at the Washington march underscoring Trump’s “Access Hollywood” tapes released before the election.

Her talk of impeachment seemed less like hyperbole when Blumenthal spoke. Saying “I love these signs,” he spoke of a constitutional crisis, claiming Russian collusion on the presidential election and vowed an independent investigation.

“We saw victory this week because the country rose up like you did,” Blumenthal said in reference to the failure of the healthcare bill that had been designed to replace the Affordable Care Act.

“We are in the fight of our lives,” he said referring to his reservations about U.S. Supreme Court nominees Judge Neil Gorsuch’s view on Roe v. Wade.

“We will not go back to the days of pre-Roe v. Wade,” Blumenthal said. “So far, he (Gorsuch) has not convinced me.”

His remarks about the healthcare bill were echoed by Himes and Murphy. The crowd of mostly women cheered as they heard from the health of Connecticut’s Planned Parenthood, the state chapter of the national Abortion Rights Action League, as well as the vice chair of state’s Democratic Party.

Despite the admitted partisan nature of the rally, Westport’s Republican First Selectman Jim Marpe was in attendance, telling the crowd at the end that it was “an extraordinary event that unites all of us.”

“Despite differences, Westporters treat each other with mutual respect and civility. The non-partisan decisions we make on a daily basis are for the benefit of all residents,” he said.

“Thank you everyone for coming to Westport today. Our community is happy and honored to welcome you. Together we will build a future that we can all be proud of.”

“Congratulations to Darcy Hicks and all the others for successfully organizing this important and peaceful event,” said Marpe.

Peaceful it was. Even the one protester who drove by with a megaphone and said “Make America great again,” moved on after he said his piece.

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Posted 03/26/17 at 03:07 PM  Permalink



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