San Diego

Protesters Rally Against President's Visit to San Diego

President Trump will examine the U.S.-Mexico border wall prototypes while in town

Dozens gathered at in Barrio Logan and Downtown San Diego Monday to protest President Donald Trump's proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall and deportation policies. 

This coming one day before the president is scheduled to come to San Diego Tuesday. On his agenda, talks with local marines as well as examination of the border wall prototypes in Otay Mesa. 

Immigration groups, politicians and activists gathered to speak out against the border wall at Chicano Park Monday morning.

"I have voted to impeach Trump twice now," said California Congressman Juan Vargas (D-51), at the rally to a crowd. "We are peaceful people. It's Trump that brings the vitriol."

But others in San Diego support President Trump and say there is a need for a border wall. 

"I'm hoping he can choose a prototype and they can start construction on it," said Troy Maddry. "I want our state and our country to be safe and I want people to come here legally." 

Trump's arrival Tuesday will come just days after his Justice Department sued to block a trio of state laws designed to protect people living in the U.S. illegally.

Democratic Governor Jerry Brown likened it to "an act of war" with Trump's administration.

"The State of California is sheltering dangerous criminals in a brazen and lawless attack on our Constitutional system of government," Trump said in his weekly address, accusing California's leaders of being "in open defiance of federal law."

"They don't care about crime. They don't care about death and killings. They don't care about robberies," he said, calling on Congress to block the state's federal funds.

The state of California has also joined lawsuits aimed at stopping construction of the border wall; and its judges have repeatedly ruled against policies Trump has tried to enact.

At the rally in Chicano Park, speakers accused Trump of being racist. They added they will continue to protest the border wall to ensure it is never built. 

"We want to make sure the President understands that San Diego, as well as other border communities, reject his ideas for border wall proposals," said Pedro Rios, director of American Friends Service Committee. "We reject his deportation force."

Another group gathered outside of the Federal Building in Downtown and urged the president to "build bridges, not walls."

The group, Union Barrio, focused on the president's border wall plan, immigration legislation and alleged disrespect towards Hispanic communities, saying that his actions will tear families apart.

"This is the only country I've known. I've made my life here, I'm going to college here," one protester said. "We're being looked down upon as racists and thieves."

Some people just hoped that San Diegans on both side of the aisle keep things civil on Tuesday out of respect.

"Regardless of whether people like him as president or not, we hope to see people respecting him because the truth of the matter is he is our president," El Cajon resident Lindsey Anderson said.

Last week, Oakland's mayor warned residents of an impending immigration raid — a move that Trump called disgraceful and said put law enforcement officers at risk.

Trump has repeatedly floated the idea of flying in to Otay Mesa to pick the winning design for the border wall, telling rallygoers last year in Alabama: "I'm going to go out and look at them personally and pick the right one."

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