The ever-controversial Republican Representatives Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene decided to show up in southern California on Saturday for a “free speech rally” despite the third cancellation of their “America First” rally earlier in the day, this time by the city of Anaheim.
According to a local newspaper report, Gaetz and Green dropped by Riverside City Hall to hold a “free speech rally” Saturday evening.
The rally was originally scheduled to take place at the Pacific Hills Banquet and Event Center in Laguna Hills, but the event was canceled because venue manager Javad Mirtavoosi said “we just wanted to steer clear of that.” The rally was then slated to move to Riverside Convention Center, but the manager there also canceled the planned gathering.
Their last try was Anaheim Event Center, with the rally scheduled for Saturday evening, but that event got canceled as of Saturday morning after the City of Anaheim “shared public safety concerns” with the venue.
Riverside Press-Enterprise reporter Jeff Horseman wrote today that the pair decided that their second choice, Riverside, would become their first choice. And, although they did not venture to the Riverside Convention Center, according to Horseman’s report they drew a crowd of more than 100 at Riverside City Hall.
An excerpt from the story:
“They spoke before a cheering crowd of more than 100 who waved Greene and Gaetz signs.
Greene took the microphone first.
“We won’t back down,” she said. “The radical left wants to threaten you, they want to harass you, they want to target you, and they want to cancel you.”
“And here’s what we’re going to do, America. You’ve got two members of Congress right here and we refuse to be canceled because we won’t let you be canceled.”
Greene praised former President Donald Trump, saying “the press and the lying fake news media harassed him and smeared him to make America hate him,” she said. “But do we hate him?”
“No!,” the crowd shouted.
Trump, Greene said, “showed us America First policies. And these are the policies that are going to save our country and stop the Communists that are trying to destroy our freedom!”
Later, Gaetz took the stage to shouts of “U.S.A.”
“Marjorie and I called out the (Make America Great Again) army a few hours ago and you are here because you love America,” he said. “They may try to cancel us online. They may try to pursue us in real life. They may try to shut down our venues. But we will take take this fight to them in the courts, in the halls of Congress and if necessary, in the streets!”
Horseman kept up a running thread of Tweets on the event beginning at about 3:45 p.m. A sample:
And one with a quote from Greene: