(From MPR’s Tim Nelson)
RNC? Si se puede!
About 850 people marched up Cedar Street this afternoon to rally in support of immigrant and other rights.
We counted them. Really.
It was a little tougher, though, to keep track of the people that were keeping track of the marchers: the local gendarmerie looked like they taking the opportunity to hone their civic order keeping skills, as long as there was a march to secure.
It looked like there were about eight St. Paul officers on bikes working the crowd, and a goodly many more in marked squads making themselves “10-8,” as the saying goes, in case their services might be called for.
There was also a fairly significant, um, discrete presence along the route of what was a raucous but otherwise peaceable march route.
These fellows, who said they were with the St. Paul Police Department, were running a camera out the window of this Ford Ranger, recording the May Day event for posterity.
A few of Bloomington’s finest were parked in a Jeep behind nearby, availing themselves of the opportunity to get a firsthand preview of this summer’s activities. There was even what looked like a rented Merit Chev van packed with St. Paul officers parked a down the street in what we can only assume was a low-profile reserve.
St. Paul police have long been a pretty amenable presence around demonstrations, but this might just be the first tangible evidence of their preparations for the coming Republican National Convention.