White House Protesters Enlist Mariachi to Try to Keep Trump Awake

Protesters gather in front of the White House for a rally and candlelight vigil on July 18, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call via AP Images)

WASHINGTON — The third night of protests outside of the White House was headlined by an 18-piece mariachi band that began playing after 9 p.m.

Adam Parkhomenko, who was national field director for the Democratic National Committee in 2016, tweeted after Tuesday night’s protest, “We are looking for some good mariachi bands to play outside the White House around Trump’s bedtime. If you have any recommendations please let us know.”

On Monday night, after President Trump arrived back in the U.S. from his summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, protesters gathered in Lafayette Park used airhorns, whistles and even clanking pots and pans in an effort to keep Trump awake.

“If someone flew home from Helsinki they’d get back to DC around 9pm.  You know what I’d hate if I just got back & needed sleep? A bunch of people outside my home with bullhorns & air horns,” Philippe Reins, a former advisor to Hillary Clinton at the State Department, tweeted Monday afternoon, adding, “I’ve never started a protest. How does one do that @MoveOn?”

Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) showed up on the first night. At Tuesday’s protest, actress Alyssa Milano and Michael Avenatti, the attorney for adult-film star Stormy Daniels, showed up.

Parkhomenko accepted online donations at the ActBlue website, which fundraises for Democratic candidates and causes, to pay the mariachi band or “the future most epic bagpipe performance you have ever seen.” He tweeted that donations came “in ridiculous time” and would fund “other things that will help Donald Trump sleep at night.”

Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) spoke at the rally before the sun went down and the mariachi started. After the performance concluded, Parkhomenko tweeted a call for opera singers to perform outside the White House.

Parkhomenko said he and Reins have also been discussing acquiring the U.S. version of the Trump baby blimp that flew in London and Scotland during Trump’s European trip.

“We are looking into Jr., Kushner, et al. baby blimps too. Sarah Huckabee as well. If you have artwork ideas send our way,” Parkhomenko tweeted. He solicited donations for a Trump balloon at ActBlue.

But two New Jersey activists “inspired by the patriotic actions of our friends in the UK” already raised $23,693 in four days — starting with a goal of $4,500 — on GoFundMe.

“Given your generous response we will be purchasing more than one Baby so we can go coast-to-coast, border-to-border. Our goal is to make Baby Trump available to various locations around the country. Dozens of locations have reached out to us. Therefore, we are building a Team to manage the tour to make sure that Baby gets as much exposure as possible. We will be reaching out to organized Resistance groups to help with this effort. In acknowledgement of the creative investment made by our compatriots in the UK, we are working closely with them to use their design and not a knock off. Working in cooperation with them is more important than saving money. We stand together and hope you will understand,” said Didier Jiminez-Castro of Hillsborough, N.J., and Jim Girvan of Branchburg, N.J.

“All of the funds collected are being deposited into a dedicated personal account to allow for disbursements over time such as purchasing the Babies, future shipping fees while on tour, permits, security, publicity, baby sitter gear and other Baby Trump stuff,” they added. “Our books are open.”