A protester shouting about abortion and that Sen. Charles Schumer was “the devil” had to be removed from the Senate’s public gallery during the impeachment trial.
A few hours into President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial Wednesday, a man apparently got into the public gallery overlooking the Senate chamber and began shouting as House Manager Hakeem Jeffries was in the middle of delivering his opening argument.
(Video: Associated Press)
The New York Democrat was reading from the official White House readout of the July phone call between President Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky when the man, who somehow got past security and burst into the Senate chamber, began shouting about abortion and dismissing the impeachment charges.
“Jesus Christ!” the man, later identified as pro-life protester Rives Miller Grogan, yelled. “Schumer is the devil … they support abortion!”
Protestor burst into Senate public gallery above the floor yelling during Jeffries remarks in the impeachment trial. Police pulled him out and he continued to yell in the hallway before he was taken away. “Schumer is the devil” he said.
— Craig Caplan (@CraigCaplan) January 22, 2020
A protester just burst into the Senate gallery, Gallery 5, across chamber from the dais, yelling something like “Jesus Christ! They’re trying to overturn the election!” Capitol Police instantly grabbed him and pulled him out to the hall. Yelling continued. #impeachmenttrial
— Todd J. Gillman (@toddgillman) January 22, 2020
— Márcio M. Silva (@marciojmsilva) January 23, 2020
Talked to other visitors in line who confirmed what it looked like from my angle: the protester immediately started yelling as soon as he got through the chamber door and was quickly pulled back out by officers.
— Ryan J. Reilly (@ryanjreilly) January 22, 2020
“There will be order. The sergeant-at-arms will restore order in the gallery,” Chief Justice John Roberts, who was overseeing the trial, said as he banged the gavel.
Capitol police reportedly pinned Grogan down and arrested him on a charge of unlawful conduct, according to Eva Malecki, a Capitol Police spokeswoman.
? Protestor outside the senate chamber was pinned down by Capitol security and was shouting about abortion and Nancy Pelosi, and shouting to end the impeachment trial
— Deepa Shivaram (@deepa_shivaram) January 22, 2020
US Capitol Police say the man who was shouting & interrupted the impeachment trial was arrested on a charge of unlawful conduct after he unlawfully entered the Senate Gallery. A police spokeswoman says the investigation is continuing & additional charges are possible.
— Mike Balsamo (@MikeBalsamo1) January 23, 2020
Grogan is apparently not a stranger around the Capitol and is familiar as an anti-abortion activist who was charged for simple assault and using inappropriate language at the Supreme Court back in 2006.
According to the Washington Examiner:
During President Barack Obama’s inauguration, he climbed a tree with an anti-abortion sign and screamed anti-abortion sentiments against the Democratic Party throughout the event. He was charged with a misdemeanor for illegally climbing a tree on federal property and contempt of court for violating an order to stay away from the Capitol.
He was previously arrested for disturbing other events in D.C., including in 2013 when he was charged with disorderly conduct after busting into the House chamber after lawmakers were finished reading the Constitution. Ten days before that, he was yanked from the Senate chamber visitor’s gallery after loudly blaming the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting on abortion.
As Grogan was led out, Jeffries continued to speak, briefly quoting a Bible verse before moving on with his statement.
“For the Lord loves justice and will not abandon his faithful ones,” he said from the lectern, quoting Psalm 37:28.
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