Anti-Donald Trump protests break out for second day in California

Hundreds of protesters jostled with police in riot gear Friday outside a California hotel where Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump was to give a speech, forcing the candidate to duck into a back entrance.

AFP| Last Updated: Apr 30, 2016, 08:05 AM IST
Anti-Donald Trump protests break out for second day in California

Burlingame: Hundreds of protesters jostled with police in riot gear Friday outside a California hotel where Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump was to give a speech, forcing the candidate to duck into a back entrance.

Protesters broke through barricades set up around the hotel near San Francisco`s international airport where the California Republican Convention was taking place.

Police guarding the entrances were able to stop them from entering the hotel.

The demonstrators waved banners that read "No hate, no racism, no Trump," "We need a uniter, not a divider" and "Trump is the modern day Hitler." Several carried Mexican flags.

Some protesters lobbed eggs at officers, and news footage showed a few protesters being dragged away by police after Trump`s speech ended.

The tense protest in Burlingame follows similar demonstrations that turned violent late Thursday at another Trump campaign rally in southern California.

On Friday, police blocked the roads near the hotel hosting Trump`s speech and formed a security cordon to keep protesters from entering.

"I came out here to support my people and my father," Adrian Olivares, a 23-year-old college student draped in a Mexican flag, told CNN.

Jorge-Mario Cabrera, spokesman for the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA), denounced Trump`s rhetoric and said he hoped the real estate magnate would be defeated at the polls.

"The community is sick of being denigrated, disrespected and attacked," he told AFP in a statement. "Nevertheless, our reaction should be to march peacefully, as we have always done, and vote at the polls."

The GOP front-runner was forced to hop over a barrier and use a back entrance to the hotel, surrounded by security guards.

"That was not the easiest entrance I`ve ever made," he said, adding that he felt like he "was crossing the border."

After delivering his speech without incident, he was again escorted out the back entrance.

Late Thursday, some 20 people were arrested outside the Orange County amphitheater in Costa Mesa during a Trump campaign stopover, which drew a crowd of thousands ahead of the state`s June 7 primary.

The demonstrators hurled rocks at passing vehicles and vandalized cars, smashing at least one patrol car`s window and puncturing the tires on a police sports utility vehicle, while trying to overturn another police car.

California, which votes on the last day of Republican primaries, is absolutely crucial in Trump`s push to secure the number of delegates he needs to win the Republican presidential nomination outright.

Protesters have disrupted campaign rallies for Trump across the country, denouncing the frontrunner`s rhetoric against Muslims and immigrants.

The billionaire developer has outraged many by comparing Mexican immigrants to "rapists" and has vowed to build a wall along the Mexican-American border to prevent illegal immigration.

str-jz/acb