Groups gathered outside local congressional offices demanding that President Donald Trump (R) be impeached and convicted, and for Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY1) to be expelled from Congress following his vote against the certification of Electoral College ballots.
On Monday, Jan. 11, the group Suffolk Progressives organized the protest and created a petition, demanding Zeldin leave his position.
Shoshana Hershkowitz, from South Setauket, who founded the group, said they are against the congressman’s vote challenging the results of the 2020 presidential election — even after the deadly riots at the U.S. Capitol Jan. 6.
“He continued to talk about his feelings despite the evidence from the country,” Hershkowitz said. “On Jan. 2, he put a tweet out saying this is a lie. … Those words unfortunately they came to fruition on Jan. 6.”
After the mass attack on the Capitol by pro-Trump extremists, Zeldin still voted to object the election of President-elect Joe Biden (D), and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris (D).
“The combination of all of it, and then going back into the chamber after all of this violence and death, refusing to accept those results, trying to overturn the people … it was mind-blowing,” she said.
Upon Zeldin’s vote, Hershkowitz and her group penned a petition that is now up to nearly 2,000 signatures, calling for his expulsion.
“I was hoping that after all this he would change his tune,” she said.
On Monday, Jan. 11, a group of more than 100 people gathered outside of Zeldin’s Patchogue office. A smaller group of counter-protesters stood across the street.
Members further west rallied outside Rep. Tom Suozzi’s (D-NY3) Huntington office, asking him to demand that Zeldin be accountable. Suozzi supports the removal of Trump through the 25th Amendment or impeachment.
The day of the insurrection, Zeldin released a statement.
“This should never be the scene at the U.S. Capitol,” he said. “This is not the America we all love. We can debate, and we can disagree, even on a January 6th following a presidential election. We can all passionately love our country, but in our republic, we elect people to represent us to voice our objections in the House and Senate on this day.”
He added that there must be “zero tolerance for violence in any form.”
Hershkowitz said she will be sending the petition to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
“I believe that these people shouldn’t be sitting in Congress,” the group organizer said.