The Tax March in New York “exceeded expectations,” in both number of participants and in the hostile reaction from the president on Twitter, a rally organizer told Metro.
On Sunday, Trump tried to delegitimize the Americans who exercised their First Amendment right in the nationwide April 15 events demanding he release his tax returns. He lashed out on Twitter, accusing protesters of being paid to march and called for an investigation into who hired them.
“Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies yesterday. The election is over!” Trump tweeted at 6:13 a.m. on Easter.
“I did what was an almost an impossible thing to do for a Republican-easily won the Electoral College! Now Tax Returns are brought up again?” he followed up at 9 a.m.
Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies yesterday. The election is over!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 16, 2017
I did what was an almost an impossible thing to do for a Republican-easily won the Electoral College! Now Tax Returns are brought up again?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 16, 2017
About 25,000 to as many as 35,000 protesters poured onto New York City streets on Saturday, according to NYPD estimates, organizer Wes Shockley said. At least 125,000 people, a modest estimate based on Facebook RSVPs, are believed to have marched in more than 150 demonstrations held throughout the country, he said.
Protesters seized on chicken props to imply Trump is afraid to bring his finances to light. A follow-up event is planned on the actual Tax Day, April 18, outside Goldman Sachs offices to demand they pay their fair share in taxes.
To organizers, Trump’s reaction indicated that the protests successfully conveyed their message.
“I think all of us are happy that he heard us, just for one simple reason, it's the point of protests," Shockley said. "Like all things Trump, his reaction becomes so erratic and nonsensical, and it further demonstrates the problem with his presidency.
“Obviously it got under his skin. In a way, it was also effective because it demonstrates his fundamental flaw as a leader.”
Yet the marches accomplished more than provoking the president, Shockley said. They debunked Trump's claim that no one but the news media cares about his tax returns.
“Now along with the polls showing 74 percent of all Americans want to see his returns, there’s an example of hundreds of thousands of people demonstrating it,” he said.
Shockley said the Tax March will hopefully provide momentum for rallies planned for other issues, such as the Science March called for 500 cities across the globe on April 22, and the People’s Climate March on April 29.