Activism

Politicians Rally Against Trump's Acting-AG Appointment Outside State Capitol

The crowd outside the Capitol building only got larger as the evening wore on.
The crowd outside the Capitol building only got larger as the evening wore on. Conor McCormick-Cavanagh
Hundreds of Coloradans braved the cold weather on the evening of Thursday, November 8, to gather outside the State Capitol for a protest against the Trump administration. Prompted by the president's demand that Attorney General Jeff Sessions resign, the rally, which included a who's-who list of state Democrats, was part of hundreds of #ProtectMueller protests happening around the U.S. that demanded that Robert Mueller's election-interference investigation be allowed to continue.

Following Sessions's departure, Matt Whitaker, Sessions's chief of staff, became acting attorney general and is now also in line to oversee the Mueller investigation.

Whitaker's appointment has been fiercely criticized by Democratic politicians throughout the U.S., who view him as a Trump lackey who is unlikely to follow in Sessions's footsteps and recuse himself from monitoring the Mueller investigation.

Tay Anderson, the ever-present activist planning to run for Denver School Board, emceed Thursday's event and was joined on the Capitol steps by a slew of Colorado politicos, some brand-new to their positions.

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Congressman-elect Joe Neguse speaking to the crowd.
Conor McCormick-Cavanagh
Congressmen-elect Joe Neguse and Jason Crow spoke and garnered plenty of praise from attendees. Senator Michael Bennet also took the mic, going on a tirade against Trump, much to the crowd's delight. At one point, a man shouted to Bennet, "Ask Cory Gardner to stand up for what's right," to which Bennet responded in jest, "Thanks for passing that along."

Representative Joe Salazar also spoke, as did Brianna Titone, a candidate for House District 27 who holds a slight lead in the race, which has not yet been called. Titone would become Colorado's first transgender state representative. "When the Trump administration tries to erase us, we fight back," Titone said to widespread cheers.

Fresh off his victory in a close race against George Brauchler and with a growing crowd in front of him, state attorney general-elect Phil Weiser praised the election results in Colorado. "This election in Colorado was a referendum on democracy, and democracy won," Weiser said, before lambasting Sessions and the Trump administration's approach to firing and replacing the attorney general.

Second to Trump, Sessions drew the most ire from speakers, some of whom referred to him as the worst AG in American history. Gardner was also not much of a fan favorite; Anderson spoke to attendees about how they would vote out the Republican senator in 2020.
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Conor McCormick-Cavanagh is a staff writer at Westword, where he covers a range of beats, including local politics, immigration and homelessness. He previously worked as a journalist in Tunisia and loves to talk New York sports.