Matt Braynard, organizer of Saturday’s “Justice for J6” rally in Washington, D.C., called on demonstrators present on Capitol Hill to respect law enforcement.
“There are uniformed officers here whom I demand you respect, you're kind to, you're respectful to and you're obedient to,” Braynard told rallygoers.
“They're here to keep us safe, and we're counting on them to do that, and we know that they will,” he said.
"Justice for J6" rally organizer Matt Braynard: "There are uniformed officers here whom I demand you respect, you're kind to, you're respectful to and you're obedient to. They're here to keep us safe and we're counting on them to do that." pic.twitter.com/qhpg1K402k— The Hill (@thehill) September 18, 2021
Authorities ramped up the security presence ahead of Saturday’s rally, which is being held in support of the roughly 570 people who have been arrested in connection with the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
That day, supporters of former President TrumpDonald TrumpHarris stumps for McAuliffe in Virginia On The Money — Sussing out what Sinema wants Hillicon Valley — Presented by Xerox — The Facebook Oversight Board is not pleased MORE stormed the Capitol in an effort to stop the certification of the 2020 presidential election. Many of the rioters had attended a rally on the National Mall during which the former president encouraged those present to demand that Congress halt its proceedings.
When the rioters reached the Capitol, they breached security, battered Capitol Police officers, and voiced threats against former Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceBiden, Trump tied in potential 2024 match-up: poll Nearly 80 percent of Republicans want to see Trump run in 2024: poll Why is Trump undermining his administration's historic China policies? MORE and House Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats scramble to reach deal on taxes On The Money — Sussing out what Sinema wants Overnight Health Care — Presented by Carequest — Key CDC panel backs Moderna, J&J boosters MORE (D-Calif.)
Saturday morning, Capitol Police swore in federal, state and local law enforcement officers serving as deputized Capitol Police officers specifically for the event. D.C. National Guardsmen have also been authorized to help with Saturday's event.
Only 700 people are expected to attend Saturday’s rally. Saturday afternoon, multiple reporters said that there seemed to be more police presence and media members at the rally than demonstrators.
Braynard also called on demonstrators to be kind to members of the media.
“There’s also many members of the media here, and I make the same request of them. You see somebody [who's] a member of the media, be kind and respectful to them,” Braynard said.