Protesters gather outside of the Federal Building in San

Activists block federal building, demand Pelosi back ‘Green New Deal’

Protesters blocked entrances to the Federal Building in San Francisco Tuesday afternoon to pressure House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi to support a Select Committee on a Green New Deal.

The Green New Deal, legislation being championed by U.S. Rep-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-New York, seeks to develop a plan to reduce greenhouse gases and move toward green infrastructure while creating millions of new jobs nationwide.

Today’s protest at the building on Seventh Street in San Francisco comes on the heels of a large demonstration Monday at the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., in which more than 130 protesters were arrested for sitting in at Pelosi’s office and the offices of other top Democratic officials.

The protesters are with the group Sunrise Movement Bay Area, part of a larger national organization made up of hundreds of teens and young adults.

Earlier in the morning, about 300 protesters rallied at United Nations Plaza ahead of the action at the Federal Building.

“We’re demanding a Green New Deal because it is the only plan that will act in line with science and justice and get us where we need to be,” said Morissa Zuckerman with Sunrise Movement Bay Area. “A lot is at stake in this moment.”

Zuckerman said the group is planning to block the entrance to the Federal Building for “as long as it takes.” The members are risking arrest, she said.

In November, Sunrise Movement members also held a sit-in at Pelosi’s Washington office.

According to Taylor Griffin, a spokesman for Pelosi, she had reached out to the Sunrise Movement during the initial November protest and offered a meeting but the group did not respond until Monday.

“Addressing climate change remains a top priority for Speaker-designate Pelosi. She has proposed reinstating a select committee on climate and looks forward to caucus-wide discussion with the committees of jurisdiction to determine the appropriate path forward,” Griffin said.

Pelosi is currently in Washington and met with President Donald Trump at the White House today to discuss funding for border security.

-Daniel Montes, Bay City News

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