Occupy Congress, the first protest on a national level attempted by the Occupy movement, gathered on the West Lawn on the National Mall today eager to assert itself as the new Congressional session began.
A well-practiced human mic repeated the words “Welcome to DC and welcome to Occupy Congress!” at the General Assembly at noon.
Capitol Police were out in force and clearly prepared for the protest, which may not have drawn as many people as the 5,000 or so the organizers had anticipated. Occupiers danced and celebrated, but they seemed eager to confront police.
As protestors moved up toward the North side of the Capitol, officers eased them back down the hill, resulting in a long stand-off along the walkway. At least one protestor was arrested.
After Congress adjourned for the afternoon, the Occupiers organized into a march behind large waving flags and processed to the Rayburn Building where the offices of House members are located.
A large protest and rally is planned for 6pm and the Capitol.