About 50 people turned out to protest President Donald Trump, who visited the South Fork Saturday for reelection campaign fundraisers.
When Lisa Votino, the protest organizer, found out that the president would not be arriving in Southampton until Saturday evening, due to a press conference in New Jersey on coronavirus relief, she postponed the protest by two hours. It got underway at about 5:30 p.m. Marine One landed at Southampton High School shortly after 6.
“It was small because of the time change, but it went really well,” Votino said late Saturday night. “We had middle schoolers and high schoolers join us. I love to see them involved and energetic,” she said.
Trump’s motorcade did not pass the group, which stood at the corner of Hill Street and First Neck Lane in Southampton Village, due to police road blocks. State troopers, Suffolk police and Southampton Town and Village police shut streets down for blocks around the high school and the location of the fundraiser, John Paulson’s house on First Neck Lane.
The coronavirus, TikTok and the Black Lives Matter movement were among the focus on the signs held up by protestors. Votino held a sign her 7-year-old daughter came up with: “Ban Trump Not TikTok.”
Another person held a sign that read, “Trump gets tested everyday. Why can’t we?,” referring to COVID-19 testing. Protestors wore masks when they stood in groups.
Vincent Vertuccio, a 17-year-old who serves as co-chair of Suffolk County for Biden, traveled from Sayville with a friend for the anti-Trump protest. “When I look at what the Trump administration does, every policy action, every policy move can either be characterized by gross incompetence or gross malevolence and that is not the way I should be able to describe our president. The hatred I see from him it really saddens me and it scares me because we have someone whose attacking critical rights like LGBT rights, attacking the Black Lives Matters movement and then we have someone who just has know idea what they’re doing,” he said.
“I detest the man given what he’s done to our country. I couldn’t watch him come to Long Island without giving him a little bit of resistance,” Vertuccio said.
One day earlier, a small group of protestors stood on the shore at Fort Pond Bay where a flotilla of Trump supporters tied up following the TrumpStock boat parade.
Reporting by Christine Heeren