Pro-Palestine Protesters Interrupt Biden’s High-Profile Fundraising Event with Obama and Clinton

Charles Dharapak / AP file

At a recent fundraising event for President Joe Biden at Radio City Music Hall, the atmosphere was charged with more than just political fervor. The event, which took place on Thursday, March 28, was marked by a series of protests both inside and outside the venue.

President Biden, joined by former Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, aimed to galvanize support and gather funds for his 2024 re-election campaign, as reported by the New York Post. The proceedings inside the venue were disrupted on several occasions by protesters. One of the first to make her dissent known was a woman blowing a whistle and carrying a sign that read “war pig,” voicing her concerns over potential nuclear conflict with Russia before being escorted out.

Following this initial disruption, the event witnessed two more waves of protest, primarily focusing on President Biden’s policies towards Israel and its conflict with Hamas. The demonstrators, who booed and whistled, accused the president of having “blood on your hands,” with one exclaiming, “Shame on you Joe Biden.”

In response to the commotion, President Biden requested that the demonstrators be allowed to leave peacefully. These instances of protest underscored the contentious atmosphere surrounding the event, which was designed to be a grassroots fundraiser.

The event was moderated by Stephen Colbert, host of CBS’s ‘Late Show‘, who navigated through the interruptions during the armchair discussion with the three Democratic presidents. Despite the disruptions, which occurred a total of six times, the panel continued.

Outside Radio City Music Hall, the scene was equally tumultuous. Hundreds of anti-Israel protestors had convened as part of a “Flood Manhattan for Gaza” demonstration, voicing their dissent with chants of “Free, free Palestine!” and criticisms directed at President Biden and the Democratic Party, which they labeled as “war criminals.”

At least one protestor was arrested by the NYPD for disorderly conduct as officers monitored the demonstrations closely from behind barricades along Sixth Avenue.

The event featured humorous and poignant moments alike, with Barack Obama addressing the protestors directly, urging the importance of listening alongside speaking. Stephen Colbert lightened the mood with a joke about the rarity of having three presidents in New York not for court appearances, a nod to former President Donald Trump’s legal troubles.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries set the stage for the evening, emphasizing the goal to thwart a return to what they described as Donald Trump’s chaotic administration and to secure a second term for President Biden. Schumer praised Biden’s achievements, highlighting progress in marriage equality, environmental initiatives, and the appointment of progressive judges.

According to Reuters, The fundraising event, attended by over 5,000 people including Biden’s eldest son, Hunter Biden, proved to be a financial success, raising more than $25 million. Notable musical performances and appearances by celebrities such as Lizzo and Mindy Kaling, who hosted the event, added to the night’s allure.

The fundraiser, with tickets priced from $250 to $500,000, offered attendees the chance for a photo op with the three presidents, captured by famous photographer Annie Leibovitz, and access to exclusive receptions. This event not only served as a significant financial boost for the Biden campaign but also highlighted the polarized political climate and the diverse opinions that characterize the current political landscape.

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