By Laith Agha
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – About 2,000 people protesting against the rhetoric and proposals of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump marched peacefully through downtown Los Angeles on Sunday in advance of Monday’s planned Electoral College vote to formally choose him as leader.
Trump, a Republican businessman who campaigned against illegal immigration and threatened to imprison Democratic rival Hillary Clinton if elected, lost the popular vote in the Nov. 8 U.S. election but won the contest for the electoral college, which is calculated on a state-by-state basis.
“I want to tell Mr. Trump that we are immigrants, we help this economy grow, we don’t want nothing for free,” said marcher Horalia Jauregui.
In addition to marking the day before the Electoral College is set to vote, the march took place on International Migrants Day, designated by the United Nations to draw attention to the plight of refugees.
Marchers in Los Angeles carried signs with phrases such as “Stop Trump,” “Refugees Welcome,” and “Make America Think Again,” a play on Trump’s “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan.
Heavily Democratic California voted overwhelmingly for Clinton in the election, and its leaders have begun positioning the most populous U.S. state to fight the incoming Trump administration on any challenges to its progressive policies on issues such as immigration, the environment and healthcare.
On Sunday, state Senate leader Kevin de Leon, a Democrat from Los Angeles, said he would fight any moves by Trump that conflict with what he called California’s values.
There were no obvious pro-Trump protesters at the event.
Lieutenant Al Labrada, a spokesman for the Los Angeles Police Department, said the protests were peaceful, with no incidents or arrests.
(Editing by Sharon Bernstein and Paul Tait)
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