US Capitol police arrest more than 400 activists protesting corruption in US democracy outside US Capitol

US Capitol Police arrest Democracy Spring activists participating in a sit-in at the US Capitol to protest big money in politics, April 11, 2016 in Washington, DC.
US Capitol Police arrest Democracy Spring activists participating in a sit-in at the US Capitol to protest big money in politics, April 11, 2016 in Washington, DC.

The US Capitol Police arrested more than 400 activists on Monday, for protesting the corruption of big money in US politics outside the US Capitol.

The demonstration was calm and orderly, however US Capitol Police called it an "unlawful demonstration activity" and arrested activists sitting on the stairs of the East Front of the Capitol, the seat of the Senate and the House of Representatives.

More than 2,000 people have pledged to participate in the organisation's sit-ins to "save democracy" following a 10-day march from the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia to the steps of the US Capitol.

US Capitol Police arrest Democracy Spring activists participating in a sit-in at the US Capitol to protest big money in politics, April 11, 2016 in Washington, DC.
US Capitol Police arrest Democracy Spring activists participating in a sit-in at the US Capitol to protest big money in politics, April 11, 2016 in Washington, DC.

The protestors were supporters of a group called Democracy Spring which traces its roots to the end of the Occupy Los Angeles movement.

The group announced their demand on their website which read, "Congress take immediate action to end the corruption of big money in our politics and ensure free and fair elections."

Peter Callahan, the group's communications coordinator said, "We believe this is the people's house, and Congress should be responsive to the people. We need to protect voting rights."

Protesters hoisted a scarecrow-like effigy of a corporate lobbyist holding money bags and a sign reading, "Warning: Massive civil disobedience is next."

As the US Capitol Police arrested hundreds of activists, they still vowed to repeat the protest every day for a week.

US Capitol Police arrest Democracy Spring activists participating in a sit-in at the US Capitol to protest big money in politics, April 11, 2016 in Washington, DC.
US Capitol Police arrest Democracy Spring activists participating in a sit-in at the US Capitol to protest big money in politics, April 11, 2016 in Washington, DC.

"We see populism on the rise on both sides of the spectrum. Americans are sick and tired of their politicians being bought and paid for," Callahan said and added that the group was nonpartisan.

The Democracy Spring is supported by dozens of well-known activist groups, and many famous figures including actor Mark Ruffalo and academic Noam Chomsky.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies