A group of about two dozen protesters passed through downtown Graham late Wednesday afternoon (Jan. 13) in order to denounce last week’s assault on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of outgoing President Donald J. Trump and to criticize the county’s new representative, Ted Budd, for voting for some of the challenges to President-Elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College win.
The protesters were largely veterans of the racial justice demonstrations that have rippled through Graham for much of the past year – and, on several occasions, have ended in confrontations with law enforcement and the arrest of some demonstrators.
This time, the protesters were relatively subdued as they rallied near Sesquicentennial Park and embarked on a short march to the office of Republican Congressman Ted Budd to admonish him for his support of the President. Although they were careful to keep to the sidewalk during the march, the protesters raised a clatter with their slogans and chants, including one that declared “Trump is a traitor” in the sing-songy cadence of a playground taunt.
Budd, who was elected to his third term in 2020, is new to representing Alamance County, which was drawn into a newly-configured 13th congressional district for the 2020 election. Outgoing Rep. Mark Walker did not seek reelection in a reconfigured 6th district, the district where Alamance County voters had traditionally registered their choice for Congress; Walker is now running for the U.S. Senate seat that will be on the ballot in 2022.
Before this two-block procession, Carey Kirk Griffin, who led the rally at Sesquicentennial Park, reminded the rest of the group that their march on Budd’s office would be largely symbolic since, in all likelihood, the Congressman was in Washington, D.C. at the time.
As it turned out, Budd was indeed in the nation’s capital, where the House of Representatives had been deliberating whether to impeach Trump for the second time over last week’s assault on the Capitol. Budd went on to vote against the President’s impeachment, which ultimately passed largely along party lines.