REPLAY: Trump in Philly for GOP retreat
Full recap of President Trump's visit to Philadelphia for the GOP retreat, and both anti-Trump protests that snaked through Center City.
President Trump spoke at the GOP's congressional retreat at the Loews hotel in Philadelphia today. Here are three takeaways from the day:
1. Trump's speech, his first event outside Washington since his inauguration, proclaimed that the "hour of justice for the American worker has arrived." He vowed to build a wall bordering Mexico, end sanctuary cities and renegotiate trade deals, and touched on other themes from his America-first campaign.
2. Thousands of people took to the streets in Center City in protest, standing up against Trump's stances on immigration, health care, education, the environment and other issues. The protests were expected to end around 7 p.m., but could continue late into the evening.
3. In his speech, Trump claimed that murder rate in Philadelphia was "increasingly terrible." That's not true.
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7 p.m. Wrapping up live coverage today. For a full recap, see the replay of our live blog below:
5:55 p.m.: Protesters are clustered at two different locations.
5:30 p.m.: Jammed.
Rami Levi, owner of Gold Galore, a jewelry store on 11th and Market, closed shop two hours early. He says he is afraid the protest might get put of hand and that someone will break his windows.
"This killed the whole day for me," said Levi of the protests. Levi, 50, said he's been robbed before and prefers to "play it safe." "It's my livelihood."
5:10 p.m.: As 50 supporters of refugees marched on Market Street to the Loews hotel, Michelle Vaughn, a finance worker on her lunch break, joined and chimed in with their chants.
"When refugees are under attack, what do we do? Fight back! … No hate, no fear, immigrants are welcome here."
Vaughn, of Berwyn, said she was not an experienced protester, but that President Trump's agenda to build a southern border wall, punish sanctuary cities, and bar refugees from several predominantly Muslim countries, drew her out.
"My family came from Ireland in 1742 and went to Virginia," she said, drawing a pocket-size copy of the U.S. Constitution from her hand bag. "There's a clause in here for freedom of religion. … Who decides who 'we the people' are? Is it 'we the people,' except Muslims?"
5:05 p.m. The march appears to be at an impasse:
5 p.m.: Protest continues to march through Center City.
4:57 p.m.: A few hours after President Trump falsely told a gathering of Congressional Republicans that Philadelphia's murder rate has been "terribly increasing," Mayor Kenney called the president a purveyor of "fake facts." Reporter Julia Terruso has the full story.
4:51 p.m.: Police stopped two people at 13th and Market streets "who were in possession of firecrackers, lighter fluid and a crowbar" according to a news release. No arrests were made.
4:40 p.m.: A new protest is marching from Rittenhouse Square toward the Loews Hotel. Reporter Jason Nark estimates that more than 1,000 people are part of the group.
4:27 p.m.: The protest earlier today was peaceful, with no major incidents reported. Trump's motorcade, however, was booed as it arrived at the hotel. Click here for the main protest story.
3:40 p.m.: Theresa May is the first British Prime Minister to visit Philadelphia since 1965.
3:10 p.m.: President Trump is back in Washington.
3:04 p.m.: There's a bit of a lull in protest activity right now, but another demonstration is set to begin at Rittenhouse Square at 4 p.m.
2:18 p.m.: President Trump claimed in his speech that the murder rate in Philadelphia had been "terribly increasing." That's not true. Homicides in the city – measured by either yearly murder totals or the murder rate (the number of murders per 100,000 people) – have actually been largely decreasing. The data from crime reporter Chris Palmer:
2:03 p.m.: A contingent of protesters gathered at Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey's office, chanting about health care. Some members of that group now appear to be heading back to City Hall.
1:59 p.m.: A man at the protest was detained with a knife and other materials. Police told reporter Jason Nark that the man had been dressed in black with his face covered.
1:49 p.m.: As President Trump spoke, protesters outside the hotel waved signs and chanted. As the speech ended, some of the crowd was dispersing, with some protesters heading to Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey's office.
1:41 p.m.: Trump has finished speaking. The rest of his speech touched on familiar themes from his campaign, including repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act, promoting American labor, improving infrastructure, and rebuilding the military. A recap of the speech from politics writer Tom Fitzgerald is here.
1:29 p.m.: In addition to wall with Mexico, President Trump focused on immigration, saying he would speed the "removal of criminal aliens" and end illegal immigration and sanctuary cities. He also billed the cancellation of next week's meeting with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, called off by Peña Nieto, as a joint decision.
1:23 p.m.: Early in his speech, President Trump predicted that "this Congress is going to be the busiest Congress we've had in decades" and touted the early actions of his administration. He said he had taken steps to "return power to everyday Americans," and highlighted executive actions regarding pipelines, withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and construction of a wall bordering Mexico. Trump called the moves during the first days of his administration the "very beginning of a massive effort to reduce the crushing regulations on our economy."
1:16 p.m.: Trump begins speaking. He opens by saying it was "nice to win" and that it's "great to be in Philadelphia, I went to school in Philadelphia." (He attended the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School.)
1:15 p.m.: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell introduces President Trump.
1:12 p.m.: As President Trump prepares to speak inside the Loews, a look at a few of the signs outside the venue:
1 p.m.: The front group of marchers have gotten about as close as they can to the Loews.
12:41 p.m.: As the president arrives at the Loews, thousands of protesters are also marching toward the hotel at 12th and Market Streets.
12:37 p.m.: President Trump's motorcade is approaching the hotel in Center City.
12:32 p.m.: Demonstrators are moving toward the Loews as President Trump's motorcade makes its way to the hotel. Inside, the presidential seal has been attached to the lectern.
12:25 p.m.: Staff writers Aubrey Whelan, Alfred Lubrano and Luis Ferré Sadurní report from Paine Plaza: At the Affordable Care Act-focused protest at Thomas Paine Plaza, speakers talked about how the ACA had paid for cancer treatment or helped small business owners get affordable coverage. They spoke of the fight against AIDS and the need for continued treatment, especially among communities of color. They also called for racial and economic justice, an end to police brutality, for climate-change prevention and a $15 minimum wage. All these issues, speakers stressed, were interconnected.
Jean Mikita Sashihara, 59, of New Hope, braved the demonstration with her St, Bernard, Caspian. Both had previously campaigned for Bernie Sanders.
"Clean energy and water must be on the Republican agenda," said the self-described housewife with projects.
After speeches died down, the crowd was moving from the plaza to the streets.
12:21 p.m.: President Trump's motorcade is en route to the Loews hotel.
12:15 p.m.: At the Loews hotel, Sen. John McCain sharply rebuked President Trump's support for torturing prisoners, saying, "Torture takes away the most important aspect of the United States of America -- we are a moral nation, we are not like other countries, we don't torture people. It's not only the issue of torture it's also the issue of what kind of nation we are."
11:59 a.m.: President Trump has landed in Philadelphia. He is expected to address the GOP retreat for 15 minutes, according to the White House, politics writer Tom Fitzgerald reports.
11:55 a.m.: Among the several thousand protesters now rallying in Center City: Alt-Fact Kelly, an apparent riff on top presidential adviser and South Jersey native Kellyanne Conway.
11:49 a.m.: Speakers at the rally are calling for better schools and health care, and fighting white supremacy.
11:39 a.m.: At the protest at Thomas Paine Plaza across from City Hall, much of the crowd is middle-aged or older. Far from anarchists, many in the group described themselves as concerned citizens somewhat puzzled and alarmed by what they see as a radical change in American politics.
A few said they remember the anti-war protests of the 1960s, in which the heads of government were also the subject of collective ire. "In the 60s, people fought an illegal war. Now we're fighting an illegal president. There are similarities," said Stephen Miller, 73, of West Mount Airy.
Another older protester, 69-year-old Marilyn Kraut, of Cheltenham, said people of her age can calm younger Americans who say the new administration worries them.
They protested the Vietnam War and "saw how even a bad thing can change," she said. "It's up to older people like us to show the young how demonstrations like this can change policy, like they helped end the war." - Alfred Lubrano
11:35 a.m.: An update from Police Commissioner Richard Ross:
11:30 a.m.: Air Force One has taken off from Andrews AFB en route to Philadelphia for President Trump's first trip out of Washington since the Inauguration.
11:19 a.m.: SEIU Healthcare hosted a workshop before an 11 a.m. protest, encouraging attendees to tell their families and friends about how the Affordable Care Act had helped them. Attendees shared stories about how they depended on coverage from the ACA and Medicaid expansion – and stories of uninsured friends in dire straits. Barbara Futch, of Philadelphia, said she had quit her job as a homecare worker to care for her father, who broke his spine in a fall and became quadriplegic. The Medicaid expansion, she said, had helped her family care for her father at home. "We can't imagine losing coverage," she said. - Aubrey Whelan
10:52 a.m.: Some protesters near the Loews hotel say they're upset President Trump hasn't released his taxes. Nick Roush told reporter Jason Nark he is shocked Trump got through the election without releasing them.
"You or I wouldn't get away with that," Roush said. "I'm hoping someone hacks into them."
10:43 a.m.: A growing number of protesters are gathering near City Hall.
10:30 a.m.: Some protesters are already displaying their signs on trains as they make their way into Philadelphia for demonstrations.
10:27 a.m.: President Trump is scheduled to depart for Philadelphia soon from Andrews Air Force Base. Live video is here.
10:09 a.m.: Protesters this morning are expressing concerns about President Trump's stances on immigration, environmental regulation, education and women's rights.
9:55 a.m.: As demonstrations get underway, one protester says she is disturbed by President Trump's hostility toward the press and apparent communications clampdown at the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal departments. Evelyn Seymour, who arrived early wearing political protest buttons from the 1970s, told reporter William Bender: "We're desperate for you guys to question everything. Keep fighting the good fight. Don't give up. Don't stop."
9:20 a.m.: House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are expected to address the media from the retreat at about 9:30 a.m. You can watch live here.
9:03 a.m.: By the way, all Philadelphia courts and court offices, which are in the immediate vicinity of the retreat hotel, are open.
8:47 a.m.: Police are moving media and some protesters away from the Loews Hotel, where the GOP retreat is being held.
8:37 a.m.: More than three hours before President Trump is scheduled to speak, a couple protesters are already outside the retreat hotel.
8:15 a.m.: The scene at 13th and Market Streets, near the Loews hotel, this morning:
7:40 a.m. Police are preparing for a day of protests.
7:30 a.m.: President Trump will be heading to a city not particularly in line with his ideas and policies. Trump's visit comes just a day after Mayor Kenney rebuked the president's move to strip federal funds from sanctuary cities, saying Philadelphia would not change its immigration policies. Kenney's public schedule includes no events involving the president or the retreat; the mayor instead wrote an opinion piece saying he hoped Republicans would see Philadelphia as a diverse, welcoming city and urging them to go to a Mexican restaurant in South Philadelphia owned by an undocumented immigrant. And an Inquier editorial published Thursday argued that "the early days of the Trump administration are suggestive of a tin-pot dictatorship."
6:27 a.m.: Transportation in Center City is being disrupted for the event, affecting drivers, pedestrians and public transit users.
Motorists: Market Street from 11th to Juniper Streets, 12th Street from Chestnut to Arch Streets, and 13th Street from Chestnut to Market Streets are closed from 8 a.m. until at least 6 p.m. Parking is restricted starting at 6 a.m.
Pedestrians: A security perimeter prohibits pedestrian access on the 1100 and 1200 blocks of Market Street, 12th Street from Chestnut to Filbert Streets and 13th Street from Chestnut to Market.
SEPTA: Trains on the Market-Frankford Line are not stopping at the 13th Street Station. Trolleys on Routes 10, 11, 13, 34 and 36 are beginning and ending service at the 15th Street Station. Bus routes that normally run through the closed roads are detoured. Jefferson Station's Market Street entrance is closed.
PATCO will operate on a regular schedule but will be running six-car trains all day.
6:12 a.m.: Here's what we're expecting for today's schedule, according to the White House and a leaked document outlining the retreat's itinerary:
8:30 a.m.: Panels for the GOP retreat start
10:20 a.m.: President Trump departs to head to Philadelphia
Noon: Trump speaks at the retreat
2 p.m.: Vice President Pence speaks at the retreat
2:10 p.m.: Trump departs Philadelphia to return to the White House
3:30 p.m.: British Prime Minister Theresa May speaks at the retreat
Late afternoon: Retreat sessions
7 p.m.: Former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning addresses congressional Republicans at a dinner
6:06 a.m.: Welcome to live updates from President Trump's visit to Philadelphia for the GOP retreat on Thursday, Jan. 26, 2016. The congressional Republicans' retreat at the Loews hotel in Center City started Wednesday and runs through Friday. Trump is set to speak at noon Thursday; he's scheduled to be in Philadelphia for less than four hours. Scores of protesters are also expected. Check back here for updates throughout the day.