The Washington Times reported that Bikers for Trump has negotiated with National Park Service for permits near Trump’s inaugural parade route to accommodate up to 10,000 bikers. Some from as far as California. The contingent of bikers are expected to form a buffer to prevent anti-Trump protesters from disrupting the inauguration ceremony.
According to The Washington Times report:
Groups planning to protest President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration next month monopolized the National Park Service permits to use public spaces around Washington during the event — until Bikers for Trump showed up.
Bikers for Trump founder Chris Cox said he had to negotiate with National Park Service officials to find space for the motorcyclists because anti-Trump groups had scooped up nearly every location for their “disruption” events surrounding the Jan. 20 inauguration.
Securing a designated area for the thousands of bikers expected to roll into Washington to watch Mr. Trump take the oath of office is crucial to avoiding clashes between the two sides, he said.
The bikers are accustomed to being outnumbered and face-to-face with protesters, having often set themselves up as buffers between demonstrators and supporters at Trump rallies.
Bikers for Trump became a political movement in its own right, as it held massive rallies and organized support for Mr. Trump across battleground states. It was one of just two pro-Trump groups and by far the largest pro-Trump organization to request permits, according to National Park Service records.
The other pro-Trump group, which identified itself as “Let America Hear Us, Roar for Trump!” on its permit application, requested use of a small park at Dupont Circle on Inauguration Day for 500 people to celebrate and call for a peaceful transition.
Mr. Cox, who requested a permit for 5,000 people but noted that as many as 10,000 bikers might attend, said he was discouraged from applying last week by the permit manager at the National Park Service Office in Washington.
National Park Service spokesman Michael Litterst said the permitting decisions are made irrespective of a group’s affiliation. However, he said the scarcity of available space is consistent with the agency’s first-come, first-serve policy.
Mr. Cox said that he eventually was able to submit the request for use of John Marshal Park in the Judiciary Square neighborhood, not far from the U.S. Capitol and just off the inaugural parade route.
He said he also is negotiating with the Inaugural Committee for bikers to participate in the parade.
Bikers for Trump are expected to come from as far as California for the inauguration, including large contingents from Florida and Pennsylvania.
Mr. Cox said he isn’t fearful that the protests would turn violent, citing the experience with agitators during the campaign and at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, where Bikers for Trump provided unofficial crowd control at outdoor rallies.