Santa Clarita residents, activists rally to protect Mueller investigationMai Nguyen Do November 9, 2018 0 COMMENTS
About 180 local residents and activists gathered in front of Santa Clarita City Hall at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 8 to call for accountability from the Trump administration following the removal of Jeff Sessions as attorney general.
The demonstrations were part of a national call to action following President Donald Trump’s removal of Jeff Sessions and his appointment of Matthew Whitaker as acting attorney general on Wednesday.
The rapid response action in Santa Clarita had been planned for over a year in the event that Trump took steps to interfere with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation. After the news about Jeff Sessions being fired broke, CA25 United for Progrss co-chair Hilary Schardein was asked to quickly assemble residents and activists for the emergency demonstration.
“The resignation of Jeff Sessions and appointment of Trump crony Matthew Whitaker crosses the line and we are here tonight to let Washington know that we are watching,” Schardein said. “We want Congress to take action to protect the integrity of Mueller’s investigation and are counting on our new congresswoman [Katie Hill] to help bring checks and balances back to Washington.”
Protesters lined the entire block in front of city hall on Valencia Boulevard, holding signs with variations of the phrases “Protect the independent counsel” and “No one is above the law” written on them.
“Trump firing Jeff Sessions is like someone trying to fire the person arresting them,” Canyon High School student Grant Ohanian said. “We have to protect our rights.”
Ohanian then led the crowd through several chants, such as “Trump is not a king,” using a bullhorn lent to him by Saugus Union School District Governing Board member-elect David Barlavi.
“Our democracy literally depends on the legitimacy of our elections,” Barlavi said. “Tens of thousands of Americans took to the streets today to tell our politicians that we won’t stand for any interference in the Mueller probe.”
Disclosure: Hilary Schardein serves on thr board of Radio Free Santa Clarita.
Mai Nguyen Do is a Vietnamese American poet and researcher. She is a lifelong Santa Clarita resident and a College of the Canyons graduate. She is also the author of Ghosts Still Walking (2016) and Battlefield Blooming (2019). Find her on Twitter @DoNguyenMai.