Protests greet VP Pence outside governors’ meeting
The second day of the National Governors Association meeting in Providence is underway. Today’s agenda features speeches by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Vice President Mike Pence, who was met in Providence by protests. The protesters rallied against many of the Trump administration’s policies, and focused on the Republican health care bill in Congress. The protest, organized by the local groups Protect Our Healthcare Coalition RI, Indivisible RI, and Service Employees International Union Rhode Island, attracted hundreds of people to Burnside Park.
Caroline and Robert Jacobus of Bristol arrived in Burnside Park with a homemade sign praising Medicaid. Caroline called the Republican healthcare bill “despicable,” in part because of Congressional Budget Office predictions that it would leave 22 million more people uninsured than Obamacare would.
“It attacks healthcare availability for our most vulnerable citizens – the elderly, the disabled. It is totally, totally anti-human,” she said. “Republicans and Mike Pence should understand that they will be held accountable if this thing passes.”
Protesters chanted “kill the bill” throughout the rally. After nearly an hour of speeches from people like Kamila Barzykowski of Indivisible RI and Jordan Hevenor of the Women’s Project, the protesters marched from Burnside Park to the Rhode Island Convention Center, where the Governors Association meeting was taking place.