William Jacobson of Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion has the story:
Protests in support of Wisconsin public sector unions were organized by MoveOn.org and labor unions today.
Promoters, such as David Dayen at Firedoglake, were predicting a million-person turnout nationwide. But reports as of 7:00 E.S.T. today make clear that other than in Madison, Wisconsin, the crowds were sparse.
The turnout in Madison was sizable, with estimates ranging over from 50-70,000, which included protesters bused in from other states. (Dayen is trying to pump the crowd estimate to over 100,000.) But elsewhere, the crowds numbered only in the hundreds or low thousands.
Other head counts, based on news reports, include: Boston (1000), Portsmouth, N.H. (few hundred), Augusta, ME (small crowd), New York City (“several thousand“), Chicago (1000), Miami (100), Austin (several hundred), Chicago (1000); Lansing, MI (2000), Nashville (hundreds), Los Angeles (2000), Richmond, VA (300), Denver (1000); Frankfurt, KY (several hundred), Jefferson City, MO (several hundred), Harrisburg, PA (several hundred).
While I don’t have a complete count, based on these numbers from some major cities and labor states, total protesters nationwide (excluding Madison) likely totaled under 100,000 combined.
He updated his post saying:
As predicted, the mainstream media is painting the nationwide protest as a success. The headlines talk about protests around the country, but the stories talk almost entirely about Madison, giving the false impression that there was widespread support around the country:
- The New York Times, In Wisconsin and Beyond, Rallying Behind Unions, only had one factual reference to a protest outside Madison, nothwithstanding the headline: “In Miami, about 150 people took part in a rally at Bayfront Park in solidarity with public employees in Wisconsin and elsewhere.”
- AP, Protesters across US decry Wis. anti-union efforts: “Large crowds of teachers, firefighters and public workers also gathered for rallies — holding American flags, wearing pro-union clothing and holding signs — in other capital cities including Topeka, Kan.; Harrisburg, Pa.; and Olympia, Wash.”
Gateway Pundit was all over this story as well in a post entitled FAIL… Dems Left Red-Faced; Protesters Fail to Materialize at National MoveOn Rallies:
MoveOn.org National Rallies A National Embarrassment -
Supporters Fail to Materialize Despite Best Astroturfed Efforts
MoveOn.org hosted dozens of rallies across the US today in support of public employee unions. The protests were organized by MoveOn.org and about 45 other groups that typically support Democratic candidates and causes. They were hoping that Americans would be just as outraged as they are that public employee union members might have to pay more for their pension and health care in Wisconsin.
Despite the best efforts of the state-run media and the far left, protesters failed to materialize today at the dozens of rallies in support of government employee unions. Maybe it’s because government employees make twice as much as the private sector?
Note: This is what AstroTurf looks like and why for the most part it’s a horrible failure!