Jeff Smith 9:05 a.m., Jan. 24
Occupy Makes Democratic Convention Showing
Members of the Occupy movement had perhaps their strongest San Diego showing in recent weeks as the first Occupy SoCal Conference brought together members from various cities across the region on Saturday.
Convention-goers leaving Hall C of the San Diego Convention Center for lunch were greeted by members of the Occupella women's chorus, singing re-worded renditions of classic patriotic songs such as God Bless America ("Let's change America, no blood for oil!") to the bemusement of many attendees.
As the Democrats returned for their afternoon session, a group numbering more than 100 protesters descended on the entrance, leading chants including "Democrats, come out! We've got some [expletive] to talk about!" that could be heard from beyond the trolley station across Harbor Drive.
The group was soon joined by protesters from Save the Bill of Rights, who had set up across the street to protest Democratic support of the National Defense Authorization Act. This organization, supported by a wide array of political activists ranging from liberal to conservative, formed earlier this month to protest support of the Act by Duncan Hunter and Susan Davis.
Police presence was notably lower than for past Occupy events, with perhaps a dozen officers standing by to keep the peace, in contrast to previous events where sometimes a hundred or more officers were on hand to face as few as several dozen protesters.
After demonstrating for about 30 minutes, the two groups departed together without incident.
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