Some Democrats on Capitol Hill, as well as an Independent and at least one Republican, are starting to rally behind Occupy Wall Street. From The Hill
Several liberal House lawmakers endorsed the protests Wednesday, and the leaders of the Congressional Progressive Caucus said they had been inspired by demonstrators who have been arrested and pepper sprayed during altercations with police.
“We share the anger and frustration of so many Americans who have seen the enormous toll that an unchecked Wall Street has taken on the overwhelming majority of Americans while benefitting the super wealthy,” Reps. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) said in a joint statement. [...]
House Democratic Caucus Chairman John Larson (Conn.) released a statement Wednesday saying, “The silent masses aren't so silent anymore. They are fighting to give voice to the struggles that everyday Americans are going through.”
The article goes on to note that Reps. Louise Slaughter, Dennis Kucinich, Barbara Lee and Ron Paul, as well as Sen. Bernie Sanders, have also voiced support for the protests.
Some members of the Los Angeles city council are working on passing a resolution supporting the occupiers:
Yesterday, City Council president Eric Garcetti and fellow councilmembers Bill Rosendahl, Ed Reyes and Dennis Zine, a former registered Republican who told the Los Angeles Times:
"It’s the right thing to do. We could just drive by them, or we could go talk to them.:
Garcetti, who announced his run for mayor last month, told the protesters:
"Stay as long as you need, we’re here to support you."
This morning Rosendahl will introduce a City Council resolution supporting the protesters.
David Dayen reports that Sen. Jeff Merkley is considering an appearance at Occupy Portland:
When I first sat down in Sen. Jeff Merkley’s Washington office and asked about the #OccupyWallStreet protests, he immediately said, “Portland’s starting on Thursday!” I asked him if he’d go down to a protest, and while it was clear he hadn’t thought of it to that point, he said, “It’s worth exploring.”
Rep. Charlie Rangel has already spoken at the Occupy Wall Street event in New York City.
Former Sen. Russ Feingold tells Greg Sargent that he is very encouraged by the protests:
“I’m really encouraged by what I’m seeing. People around the country are finally organizing to stand up to the huge influence of corporations on government and our lives. This kind of citizen reaction to corporate power and corporate greed is long overdue.”
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is sounding sympathetic notes:
he Federal Reserve Chairman hinted at some solidarity with the ongoing Occupy Wall Street demonstration yesterday when he told the Joint Economic Committee that he understands the protesters' frustrations. "I would just say very generally, I think people are quite unhappy with the state of the economy and what’s happening," Bernanke said. "They blame, with some justification, the problems in the financial sector for getting us into this mess, and they’re dissatisfied with the policy response here in Washington. And at some level, I can’t blame them."
Here's the video:
Not all politicians are supportive. Mitt Romney thinks
the protests are dangerous class warfare:
Mitt Romney weighed in on the growing Occupy Wall Street movement at a town hall meeting in Florida today. And in the eyes of that particular millionaire businessman, the protests aren’t good.
“I think it’s dangerous, this class warfare,” Romney said, according to National Journal.
In fairness, Romney is half-right about Occupy Wall Street. He's just wrong about it being dangerous.
Herman Cain thinks Occupy Wall Street is plot by supporters of the Obama administration, and that the entire 99 percent should be blaming themselves:
I don’t have facts to back this up, but I happen to believe that these demonstrations are planned and orchestrated to distract from the failed policies of the Obama administration. Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks, if you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself!
Here's the video:
As Occupy Wall Street continues to grow exponentially, expect the number of political figures weighing in on the protests to do the same.