Two people protesting corporate greed were arrested on Tuesday at the Democratic National Convention after disrupting a National Journal panel on energy.
The protesters, who said they were with the effort Take the Money Out, started shouting statements denouncing corporate greed during the panel and poured a fizzy, green-colored liquid over the floor. They also opened a banner that read “Corporate cash nukes this election” while facing the audience of about 50 people.
After resisting for several moments, the two protesters, Pete Tridish and Paul Davis, were escorted out by security personnel and arrested. Because no one knew what the substance was, police called the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to ensure that it wasn’t toxic. The protesters told National Journal after being arrested that the green substance was a mixture of baking soda, vinegar, and food coloring.
Neither protester nor anyone at the event was injured. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., who spoke after the first panel, was not present when the protesters interrupted the event.
According to the Twitter feed of Take the Money Out, activists with the same effort also disrupted and got arrested at another energy event the same morning at which Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., was speaking.
“It’s time we replaced corporate-funded elections with people-led elections,” states the Twitter feed of the effort. “It’s time we return to a government of the people.”
It’s likely that the protesters decided to protest the National Journal energy event because it was underwritten by Southern Co., a major utility that is constructing the first nuclear reactor in 30 years in eastern Georgia. The protest group, which opposes nuclear power, described the panel as a “nuclear energy lobbyist panel" on its Twitter feed.
Protest arrests have so far been few and far between at the Democratic National Convention. Almost 1,000 people marched through uptown Charlotte on Sunday protesting everything from bank bailouts to coal to wars. During that hours-long event, police arrested only two protesters.
Liz Lynch contributed