Protesters shut down Bachmann speech - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Protesters shut down Bachmann speech

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Protesters continue to chant as they left the USS Yorktown on Thursday. (Brandon Geier/WCIV) Protesters continue to chant as they left the USS Yorktown on Thursday. (Brandon Geier/WCIV)
Bachmann cuts her eyes at a protester as the chants begin on Thursday. (Brandon Geier/WCIV) Bachmann cuts her eyes at a protester as the chants begin on Thursday. (Brandon Geier/WCIV)

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- Protesters caused chaos aboard the Yorktown on Thursday.

During a speech by GOP presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann, about two dozen people chanting drowned out her message.

It began with one statement seemingly used to garner attention, "Mic check!"

Then chants of "we represent the 99 percent!" followed and continued as the group left the area.

Bachmann left the stage until the group, later identified as members of Occupy Charleston, left the area.

"Don't you love the first amendment? It's great we have a great country.  I want to thank you all for your understanding," stated Bachmann who eventually returned to the stage.

When the protestors were gone, it was obvious there were more of them in attendance at the event than actual Bachmann supporters.

The chaos left military veteran Jeff Reuer with mixed emotions.

"They had a right to do it, but they could have done it in a more peaceful manner," stated Jeff Reuer of Goose Creek.

Linda Ensor of Summerville wasn't pleased with the protests.

"There was an older guy leading the demonstration, and I didn't feel like it was a genuine thing at all," stated Ensor.

After the event, in response to publicity generated from the protest, Occupy Charleston issued the following statement:

"To the people,

Today Occupy Charleston invoked the first amendment at a speech by presidential candidate Michele Bachmann. Together in unison we took advantage of the moment to address the system and the people within it as to the unjust role of corporate money in politics. Michele Bachmann was not our target in this action; she is a representative of the institutional and legal corruption that has infected our country--a system of corruption that values profit over people and is driven by the financial interests of the few against the many.

Political candidates have the finances to create a spectacle to promote the interests of the 1%. This is an ability that is not afforded to the vast majority of the people. Our actions were an attempt to break that spell and to give voice to the 99% and their interests which have too long been ignored by the political establishment. This is not a Democratic or a Republican issue, this transcends petty party politics.

Corporate money poisons the political discourse in our country and makes our representatives accountable to individuals and corporations that dump uncountable and untraceable funds into politician's campaign coffers. This is not acceptable and further erodes the democratic institutions that the American people have been told are there to protect and represent them.

We want to thank Michele and the First Amendment for affording us this opportunity to speak to the public.

For the 99%,

We Are Occupy Charleston"


Transcript of Occupy Charleston chant

Transcript:

Mic check!
Mic check!

This will only take a minute.

We have a message for Mrs. Bachmann.

You capitalize on dividing Americans
claiming people that disagree with you
are unpatriotic socialists
and you promote discrimination.

This does not help the American people.

You parade as a grassroots candidate
but your campaign is funded
by Americans For Prosperity
a group that takes advantage
of legalized money laundering.

This does not help the American people.

You cater to the One Percent.
You oppose paying hardworking Americans
a living wage and refuse
to promote realistic solutions
to economic problems.

This does not help the American people.

This 501(c)4
is funded by the Koch Brothers
one of many organizations
that engage in misinformation
and drowns out the voice
of the American people,
a disturbing result
of the Citizens United decision.

This does not help the American people.

We demand an end to legitimized corruption
through a constitutional reversal
of the Citizens United decision.

This will help the American people.

Have a pleasant day.


Check back with ABC News 4 as we continue to develop this story. We will have photos and video from the event.

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