What to Know
- Protesters are marching in Center City as part of nationwide demonstrations in support of Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation.
- The protests are in response to the announcement that Matthew Whitaker will become the nation’s AG after Jeff Sessions' firing.
- The protesters are demanding that Whitaker recuse himself from overseeing the Mueller investigation in light of his past comments.
Protesters marched in Center City as part of nationwide demonstrations in support of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
The protesters first gathered at Thomas Paine Plaza on 1401 JFK Boulevard Thursday around 5 p.m. SkyForce10 was over the scene as they marched down Market Street.
The protests are in response to the forced resignation of Jeff Sessions and the announcement that Matthew Whitaker will become the nation’s acting attorney general. President Donald Trump announced the appointment Wednesday, saying on Twitter that Whitaker "will serve our Country well" and that a permanent attorney general will be nominated later.
The protesters are demanding that Whitaker recuse himself from overseeing the Mueller investigation given his previous public comments that appeared to exhibit hostility toward the inquiry.
"It is a ploy to undercut the Mueller investigation and say we don't care about the rule of law," Nancy Cunningham, one of the demonstrators, said. "I'm very concerned about that."
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner spoke during Thursday's demonstration and defended the role of a prosecutor.
"I thank you for being out here to protect Bob Mueller," Krasner told the crowd.
"What people are asking for here is not radical," he said. "We're asking that a full, free and fair investigation be allowed to continue."
During the march, supporters of President Trump also gathered on the sidewalk, some calling the effort from the protesters pointless.
"They think the democrats are going to do something and they're not," Christine Nahill, one of the Trump supporters, told NBC10. "They're going to hold President Trump from forwarding this country."
The nationwide protests are being organized by a coalition of hundreds of public interest organizations.