Occupy Minnesota (and Duluth) has come to D.C. this week, conveyed by two buses carrying about 100 protesters. They arrived Monday and broke up into groups of 15-20 to meet with Minnesotans in Congress.
They visited at least one Democrat (Rep. Keith Ellison) but devoted most of their time Tuesday sitting in the lobbies of the four Republicans in the Minnesota House delegation: John Kline, Erik Paulsen, Chip Cravaack, and Michele Bachmann.
According to Kevin Whelan of Minnesotans for a Fair Economy, the effort was targeted at pols who they think haven’t supported the Obama administration’s jobs legislation and its proposed extension of jobless benefits (or who don’t support raising taxes to extend benefits). They also wanted to press support for new revenues via raising taxes on the “one percent.”
By all reports Kline and Cravaack met with the protesters in their offices (albeit after some waiting). Paulsen arranged to meet a protester representative off the House floor, where he was voting.
Bachmann, who’s running for president, was not in town. Her chief of staff met with the protesters instead. Nevertheless, her absence prompted a lengthy sit-in in her office by about four or five protesters, all of whom, according to Bachmann’s office, remained cordial and polite.
The Minnesotans plan to join a larger “Take Back the Capitol” protest on Wednesday, and downtown offices have been told to prepare for potential traffic disruptions.
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