Environmental activists protest Trump cabinet picks in Syracuse

Jan 10, 2017

Some central New Yorkers are urging Congress to reject some of President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet picks. They brought their message to the Federal Building during a protest in Syracuse Monday. 

Syracuse physician Marianna Kaufman is part of the newly formed CNY Solidarity coalition. She says that group is particularly against four Trump nominees they call climate change deniers.

"The four picks, Rex Tillerson, Scott Pruitt, Rick Perry and Ryan Zinke, from what we know about them, they have little to no experience or knowledge of the departments they will be heading," Kaufman said. "We know they have personal and financial ties to the fossil fuel industry. We’re concerned about the effects of these four climate deniers and fossil fuel puppets, and the effect to secure a livable climate in the future.”  

Marianna Kaufman of the new group CNY Solidarity Coalition speaks out against some of the nominations for President-elect Donald Trump's cabinet during a protest in downtown Syracuse.
Credit Ellen Abbott / WRVO News File Photo

Kaufman believes the goal of these nominees, if they take office, is to increase fossil fuel consumption as much as possible. This particular protest was aimed at Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and their part in the Senate confirmation process.

Renee Vogelsang, a statewide community organizer from Syracuse says there are a couple of prongs to the groups strategy as the Trump administration gets up and running.

"One is continuing to show up, continuing to call our federal representatives, stand outside their office, let them know where we stand in this issue," Vogelsang said. "But also getting active in our community, taking part directly in the solution. Renewable energy, sustainable communities is the solution.”

The protest at the Federal Building in Syracuse was part of a national Day against Denial, in collaboration with the group 350.org.