SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Activists across the Bay Area Thursday evening were protesting President Donald Trump’s replacement of his attorney general after embattled former Attorney General Jeff Sessions resigned on Wednesday.

Trump has since appointed Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker, who protesters claim is a Trump “loyalist” who will stifle the U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.

They are calling for a “rapid response” to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is overseeing the investigation. Protests were scheduled at 5 p.m. Pacific time in Monterey, San Jose, Santa Clara, Mountain View, Palo Alto, San Mateo, San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland, Alameda, Richmond and smaller cities.

Similar rallies were held in cities nationwide. In New York’s Times Square, demonstrators chanted slogans including “Hands off Mueller” and “Nobody’s above the law” before marching downtown. They held signs saying “Truth Must Triumph” and “Repeal, Replace Trump.”

Crowds also turned out in Chicago; Greensboro, North Carolina; Chattanooga, Tennessee, and many other places.

The activists have identified themselves as NobodyisAbovetheLaw.org, a community-built movement that has organized the international protests.

“The Nobody Is Above the Law network demands that Whitaker immediately commit not to assume supervision of the investigation,” the group said in a news release. “Our hundreds of response events are being launched to demonstrate the public demand for action to correct this injustice.”

Organizers say the naming of Whitaker as Acting Attorney General is a “deliberate attempt to obstruct the special counsel’s investigation.”

Trump asked for Jeff Sessions’ resignation and then replaced him with Whitaker, his chief of staff. Whitaker has criticized Mueller’s probe.

 

© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News Service and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

 

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