The headquarters for the Occupy Iowa Caucuses movement is a spacious, coffee-shop like warehouse on one of the main streets of downtown Des Moines, where laid-back protesters mingle amid signs reading “Mitt – get bank $ out of elections” and “Give us liberty from corporate greed!”
On Thursday night – after protesters lined up for free food provided with donations to the movement – occupiers gathered for a performance and civil rights panel that attracted perhaps 70 occupiers. (A small occupy tent city has been set up a few blocks away, though protesters spent $1,000 to rent the indoor space for the week.) About five hours earlier, 12 occupiers had been arrested at the Iowa Democratic Party headquarters after they refused to move out from in front of the front door of the building, including a 14-year-old who was released into the custody of her father.
The occupiers don’t see much distinction between the Democratic and Republican parties, though the fact that President Obama is effectively unopposed for reelection gives them little in the way of targets on the Democratic side. Emily Allison of Des Moines, who was among those arrested Thursday, said she felt “betrayed” by Mr. Obama for his unwillingness to veto the National Defense Authorization Act and for not closing the Guantanamo Bay prison facility.
“I thought he would stand up for the people,” she said. Allison, who was charged with criminal trespassing. She described Democrats as the “lesser of two evils” – but added that “after seeing all the money that Obama has accepted from the corporations and the bankers it’s difficult to distinguish the parties as two different things.”
Obama is effectively unopposed for reelection, so the Occupiers are attacking the people uneffectively opposing him. They could still Occupy the White House or crash a few of his 1%er fundraisers, but don’t hold your breath waiting.
Here’s the money quote:
She described Democrats as the “lesser of two evils”
“We’re the lesser of two evils” is a strange slogan for a reelection campaign, but it might actually work.
As for the Occupiers disrupting the caucuses, I’m sure they have no “official” plans to do anything like that. But when you’re dealing with a group with no leaders anything is possible and you have to assume the worst when making preparations.
The funny part is hearing the Occupiers claim their actions are being distorted by the media. I hear the camera adds five pounds but other than that what is being distorted here?: