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Greg Bluestein

Protests fizzle out on first day of RNC

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Cleveland officers surround protesters at a demonstration near Quicken Loans Arena. Greg Bluestein/AJC

Cleveland – The tens of thousands of protesters poised to disrupt the Republican National Convention never materialized on the Monday opening of the Donald Trump’s Cleveland bash.
There were several pro-Trump and anti-Trump demonstrations crisscrossing the city as thousands of delegates streamed into the Quicken Loans Arena, but they remained peaceful amid a huge show of force from law enforcement officials.

Squads of state troopers and city police patrolled the city and kept vigil over protests, which included a march through downtown Cleveland that attracted several thousand.

Other events garnered only a smattering of demonstrators. At one protest near Cleveland’s water shore, a small group of white supremacists chanted near a contingent from Black Lives Matter. But they were vastly outnumbered by reporters and bicycle officers who ringed both groups.

“I was expecting a lot more people,” said Shanisha Hunter, 32, who traveled from New York to demonstrate. “But every little bit counts.”

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