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Large May Day March Crowd Calls for Immigration Reform

By Eric Richardson
Published: Saturday, May 01, 2010, at 09:43AM
May Day March Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa speaks to May Day marchers in Downtown Los Angeles.

Approximately 60,000 to 80,000 people made their way to Downtown Los Angeles on Saturday morning to take part in a May Day march calling for immigration reform. Many carried signs with messages directed against Arizona's recently-passed SB 1070, a law that requires immigrants to carry their papers at all times.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Councilman Jose Huizar were among those who spoke at a rally afterward that took place on Broadway between Temple and 1st. Out in front of the stage, the crowd stretched as far down the street as the eye could see.

Estimates on the number of people in that crowd varied wildly. Organizers took the stage to say that 250,000 people were on hand, but unofficial LAPD estimates were closer to 50,000.

Whatever the number, though, the turnout was unquestionably larger and more boisterous than in any year since 2006, when approximately 500,000 people made their way to Broadway. Only one arrest was made, for vandalism.

There was a briefly testy situation at the beginning of the march, where two counterprotesters with a megaphone made a point of antagonizing the arriving marchers. A crowd gathered and chants were exchanged before LAPD stepped in to calm those involved and keep people moving.


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