Thousands Gather for Women's March in D.C. to Protest Trump, Amy Coney Barrett Nomination
In addition to the Washington demonstration, more than 429 other marches — some socially distanced and others virtual — are expected to take place across the country Saturday. Over 116,000 people have pledged to participate in the demonstrations.
"The first Women's March in 2017 was historic," Rachel Carmona, executive director of Women's March, said at the Washington rally, according to USA Today. "Now four years later ... with 17 days to go [until the election], we're going to finish what we started."
With the help of demonstrators, the group also hopes to send out 5 million text messages, urging female voters to make their voices heard in the upcoming election, according to the Washington Post.
On their website, Women’s March said the demonstrations are meant to “send an unmistakable message about the fierce opposition to Trump and his agenda, including his attempt to fill Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat.”
Trump nominated Barrett for the Supreme Court last month following the death of Justice Ginsburg, and her confirmation hearings took place this past week. The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to vote on Barrett's confirmation on Oct. 22.
If appointed, Barrett could cement a six-to-three conservative majority on the court for years to come, with potentially sweeping influence over decisions about healthcare, abortion access and other issues.
At the Saturday rally in D.C., reproductive rights activist Sonja Spoo said “there is no choice” but to vote Trump out of office in the upcoming election.
"We are the hell and the high water. Donald Trump is leaving office, and there is no choice for him," Spoo, director of Reproductive Rights Campaigns at women's advocacy group UltraViolet, said. "Come Nov. 3, it will because of women – especially Black, brown and Indigenous women – stepping up and saying enough."
March participant Kelsey Weir told the Washington Post that she felt it was her duty to attend.
“Women are threatened in a world where a Christian theocracy is threatening to take over,” she said. “This is the crisis for our world. The next few weeks are going to decide so many things for women.”
In addition to the Women’s March event, conservative nonprofit organization Independent Women’s Forum hosted its second-annual “March for All Women” as a counter protest. The event was called “I’m With Her!,” according to the organization's website, and held near the Supreme Court to show support for Barrett.