Anti-Trump protests build as speech nears

Protests are growing rapidly outside the California Republican convention in Burlingame where Donald Trump is expected to speak later Friday.

As many as 100 had already gathered at about 9:30 a.m. ahead of Trump’s noon speech and hundreds more are expected to attend. Police are erecting barricades outside the convention at the Hyatt Regency San Francisco Airport at 1333 Old Bayshore Highway in Burlingame.

As the controversial real estate mogul closes in on securing the party’s nomination for president his appearances have drawn protests nationwide, including at a rally in Orange County Thursday night.

SFBay reporter Peter Snarr is in Burlingame as credentialed media and will provide additional reports and photos through the day.

More than 10,000 people replied on Facebook that they were either interested or planning on attending protests against Trump outside the convention, where he will speak at a lunch banquet.

Protest organizer Cat Brooks said Friday:

“We’re here because Trump has used the largest platform in the world to issue a message of hate and invite violence against marginalized communities.”

Brooks said the candidate espouses anti-black, anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant views.

After Barack Obama was elected president in 2008, some held the view that it indicated a post-racial society, according to Brooks, but Trump’s rise has demonstrated that belief is false.

Brooks said:

“He has exposed what we have always known is alive and here in America and that is a deeply anti-black sentiment.”

All three remaining Republican presidential candidates will speak this weekend as the convention continues with a dinner banquet this evening featuring Ohio Gov. John Kasich and a lunch banquet on Saturday with Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.

Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, recently announced as Cruz’s running mate, will host a dinner banquet on Saturday night.

Burlingame police said in a statement on Thursday night that they are preparing for the expected protests against Trump by drawing officers from law enforcement agencies throughout the region.

Burlingame police said:

“Planning efforts are focused on guaranteeing that protesters are freely able to exercise their First Amendment rights, while ensuring the safety of both the protesters as well as those attending various events at the convention.”

Trump’s rally in Costa Mesa Thursday night drew large protests that resulted in multiple arrests, according to Costa Mesa police.