PHILADELPHIA—A group of delegates to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders staged a walk-out at the Wells Fargo Center and held a sit-in at the media center next door. Police had to create a human wall around the pavilion in order to stop more protesters from going inside.
“This was planned as just a respectful, polite and symbolic exit after the vote,” New Mexico delegate Diana Orozco-Garrett said. “We were to go talk to the media about the fact that the Democratic Party essentially decided to have a President Trump today.”
For delegates like Orozco-Garrett, polls showing Sanders doing better in a head-to-head matchup with Trump than Clinton are enough to consider the Vermont senator as a viable alternative.
Many Sanders delegates took issue with the Democratic Party’s handling of DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schulz’s recent email leaks, which showed the party actively tried to support the Clinton campaign during the nominating process, something parties tend to steer clear from until after the primaries are finished.
“There are a lot of people who worked really hard to get to this point; I’m really just shocked by this dog and pony show,” North Carolina delegate Isra Allison said. “I think it’s ridiculous that we’re even out here when our voices are not even heard.”
The DNC apologized to the Sanders campaign for the scandal in a Monday statement, saying the remarks made by Schulz were “inexcusable.”
“The comments do not reflect the values of the DNC or our steadfast commitment to neutrality during the nominating process,” the statement continued.
In a separate incident, four people were arrested Tuesday evening for attempting to climb a perimeter fence to enter the secure zone set up for the DNC, according to a release by the U.S. Secret Service.