Protests to await Trump’s visit to California border
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Numerous rallies both for-and-against Donald Trump’s “big beautiful border wall” are expected to mark his first visit to California as president, where he will examine prototypes for future towering barriers to separate the United States and Mexico.
Protests are also being planned across the border in Tijuana, Mexico today when Trump will examine eight, 30-foot-tall prototypes built along the international border to fulfill his signature campaign promise.
Organizers on both sides were urging people to remain peaceful after recent scuffles at rallies in Southern California, including brawls at a Dec. 9 rally near where the prototypes stand.
San Diego is the largest city on the U.S.-Mexico border to formally oppose his plans, passing a resolution in 2017.
The visit comes amid growing tensions between the administration and state over immigration enforcement.
A top federal immigration official unleashed strong criticism of some of the state’s elected leaders ahead of the visit. Thomas Homan, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s acting director, singled out Gov. Jerry Brown, U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on Monday for recent criticism of a spate of immigration arrests in the state and a federal lawsuit challenging state laws that limit cooperation on immigration.
About 250 people marched in downtown San Diego in protest of the wall Monday evening. Some held signs, including one that read: “No hate in the Golden State.”
Immigrant activists, church leaders and elected officials held a press conference at the city’s historic Chicano Park to call for demonstrations to show border communities do not support a wall. Standing in front of murals of Mexican revolutionaries and other Latin American icons, they chanted “We reject your hate! We don’t need your racist wall!”
“It’s really important that as a region, as a city that has firsthand understanding of what the border wall means for our communities that we stand against (this) and we send a strong message to DC to say this is something that we don’t welcome,” City Councilwoman Georgette Gomez said Monday.
Gomez sponsored the resolution opposing the wall, calling it detrimental to the city’s environment and tourism. It also expressed the city’s intent to divest from the companies involved in the construction, financing and design of the wall.