An anti-Trump demonstration this week in Portland, Oregon included hundreds of students protesting Donald Trump’s victory under a police escort. Some lawmakers say this is what the First Amendment is all about - within reason.
“I think that what we have to do is recognize free speech is very important,” says Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn.
Many organizers of these rallies nationwide say they plan to demonstrate through December, right through the holidays, all the way to the inauguration and possibly beyond.
But lawmakers say freedom of speech and threatening public safety are inherently different.
“Where you are barring people from transit on city streets or on interstate highways, that is inappropriate,” says Blackburn.
“Absolutely no patience whatsoever for those who want to use their freedom of speech rights to then turn around and do illegal acts, like tearing up property,” added Rep. Evan Jenkins, R-W.Va.
Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., said the election was legitimate and it’s time to get over it.
“I really find it ridiculous that students are having cry-ins and group therapy sessions and they have dogs to comfort them,” said King. “What kind of nation are we becoming?“
Other lawmakers are quick to say the majority of demonstrators are abiding by the law.
“I think it’s a natural response,” says Rep. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Calif. “But the importance is to make sure that the way we change things in this country that we’re unhappy with is through the democratic process.”
King says that’s exactly what happened Nov. 8.
“We had the greatest generation that won a world war,” said King. “These people, they lose an election. I don’t know, maybe they want to get a participation trophy. This type of demonstrating sends a wrong signal to the world.
“It’s childish, it's immature and it's stupid.”