'March 4 Trump' Planned For Saturday in Berkeley - NBC Bay Area
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'March 4 Trump' Planned For Saturday in Berkeley

Police preparing for potentially violent counter protests

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    'March 4 Trump' Planned For Saturday in Berkeley
    Getty Images
    WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 28: (AFP OUT) U.S. President Donald J. Trump (C) delivers his first address to a joint session of the U.S. Congress as U.S. Vice President Mike Pence (L) and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R) listen on February 28, 2017 in the House chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC. Trump's first address to Congress focused on national security, tax and regulatory reform, the economy, and healthcare. (Photo by Jim Lo Scalzo - Pool/Getty Images)

    A march for Donald Trump is planned in Berkeley this Saturday, one of dozens planned nationwide to show support for the new president.

    The March 4 Trump in Berkeley is the only event planned in the Bay Area and one of three planned in California. Marches were previously planned in Los Angeles and Sacramento, but organizers decided to cancel those to attempt to bolster attendance at the other events.

    As of Thursday, 133 people had said they were attending the Berkeley march on the event's Facebook page. Several commenters were trying to arrange rides, some coming from elsewhere in the Bay Area or the Central Valley.

    Berkeley police Sgt. Andrew Frankel said Thursday that the Police Department has been in touch with organizers and while they have not obtained a permit, they are coordinating with police.

    The rally is scheduled for 2 p.m. at Martin Luther King Jr. Civic Center Park and then will march to the UC Berkeley campus at about 3 p.m., Frankel said. He said he did not know how many people would attend.

    There has been some indication that there may be counter protests at the event, including from anti-fascist groups who helped organize the violent protest against far-right writer and speaker Milo Yiannopoulos last month.

    Asked if police had any plans to prevent violence between different factions of demonstrators on Saturday, Frankel said, "The department is prepared for a number of different contingencies."

    Counter-protesters have said that there is the potential for white nationalists to attend the march, but organizer Rich Black has pushed back against that suggestion in online postings, saying that no organizers have any association with white nationalist groups.

    "If any one person that shares the beliefs associated with white nationalism or belongs to any Neo-Nazi faction or Nazi Workers Party attempts to attend this event, they will be ejected immediately," Black wrote.

    Asked how they plan to eject Nazis from the rally, Black said Thursday, "We have security detail as well and police will be present. We will remove agitators and nazis flying any nazi banners are agitators."

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