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'Reopen Cali now!': Thousands rally at Huntington Beach to protest Gov. Newsom's lockdown

The demonstration was planned prior to Newsom shutting down all Orange County beaches

Image source: KGET-TV YouTube screenshot

A crowd estimated to be thousands strong gathered in Huntington Beach, California, on Friday, protesting the state's ongoing economic shutdown amid the coronavirus crisis.

What are the details?

The demonstration was held the day after Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) ordered all beaches in Orange County to close and the Huntington Beach City Council reacted by voting to direct the city attorney to pursue legal action to challenge the governor's mandate.

But Friday's event was organized by a group called We Have Rights prior to the governor's controversial and targeted directive on beaches, and protestors made it clear they want the state back in business.

One protestor photographed by AFP carried a sign that read: "CA ECONOMY DIES FROM COVID-19."

According to the Los Angeles Times, another demonstrator carried a sign that read, "Reopen Cali Now!" and a banner was flown overhead with the message, "FIRE GRUESOME NEWSOM! OPEN CALIFORNIA!"

One of the organizers, Tiffany Garcia, told the newspaper, "We are moving to fully reopen CA now. Our First Amendment rights are being trampled on completely and we aren't going to stand it anymore. People work their whole lives for their business and they are losing their businesses in a month."

Huntington Police Chief Robert Handy told KTLA-TV that he estimated the crowd to be around 2,500 to 3,000 strong.

KNBC-TV shared footage of the protest on Twitter, reporting that "police and sheriff's deputies on horseback, on foot and on motorcycles set up skirmish lines to keep protestors out of the street in front of the Huntington Beach Pier, where thousands have amassed to rally against the governor's closure of OC beaches."

Large crowds gather at Huntington Beach after city vows legal action against order to close beaches www.youtube.com

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