Government Sachs: Protesters Decry Financial Giant Swamping Incoming Trump Administration

Web ExclusiveJanuary 18, 2017
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In New York City, over 100 people set up a protest encampment outside the headquarters of financial giant Goldman Sachs, which they are calling “Government Sachs.” At least six of Trump’s top advisers and Cabinet picks are tied to Goldman Sachs: treasury secretary nominee Steven Mnuchin, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, Trump chief strategist Stephen Bannon, Securities and Exchange Commission chairman nominee Jay Clayton, senior White House adviser Anthony Scaramucci and senior counselor for economic initiatives Dina Habib Powell.

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This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: In New York City, over a hundred people set up a protest encampment outside the headquarters of financial giant Goldman Sachs, which they are calling “Government Sachs.” At least three of Trump’s Cabinet and Cabinet-level picks are tied to Goldman Sachs, including treasury secretary nominee Steven Mnuchin; National Economic Council director, Goldman Sachs President Gary Cohn; and Trump chief strategist, former Goldman Sachs executive Stephen Bannon. Over a dozen people camped out overnight in the freezing cold. This is protester Jonathan Westin.

PROTESTERS: Hey, hey! Ho, ho! Government Sachs has got to go! Hey, hey! Ho, ho! Government Sachs has got to go!

JONATHAN WESTIN: Jonathan Westin. I’m with New York Communities for Change. We’re here today launching an encampment at Government Sachs, because, in reality, Goldman Sachs is who is really controlling this government now. So we have activists, you know, families that have lost their homes to foreclosure, that are here to begin an encampment to highlight and emphasize what this new government is going to look like. I would say people that believed he was going to drain the swamp have been lied to. It has been a complete fraud when he talked about draining the swamp. He brought them in closer. He brought all the swamp monsters inside the White House. Now they have a permanent office and are controlling all the institutions of government.

PROTESTERS: Goldman, step off it! Put people over profit! Goldman, step off it! Put people over profit!

RICHARD ROBINSON: My name is Richard Robinson. I actually came in all the way from Utah to be part of this action. I actually voted for President Trump, President-elect Donald Trump. I hoped that he wasn’t a career politician. You know, that’s what drove me to him, was that he wasn’t a career politician. He made promises of draining the swamps. I hoped he wasn’t going to be the typical politician, and I’m seeing very quickly he’s turning around and being that politician, says one thing, does the absolute opposite.

JAMIE TYBERG: My name is Jamie Tyberg. I’m with New York Communities for Change. Goldman Sachs is heavily invested in several of, you know, pipeline infrastructure, a lot of corporations in oil and gas business. Goldman Sachs is also invested in Energy Transfer Partners, which we know has been behind the Dakota Access pipeline. And the list just goes on. You can really say that now Goldman Sachs, you know, holding our economic positions in Trump’s Cabinet, plus people like Rick Perry, who sits on the board of Energy Transfer Partners, as well as people like Scott Pruitt and Rex Tillerson of ExxonMobil, all of these people, they all belong to the same group. They are all in 1 percent. And now they are the government. They used to rig the government; now they are the government.

RICHARD ROBINSON: Places like Goldman Sachs, they have a very, very strong, strong role in our government. And it shouldn’t be that way. The people should have a strong role in the government, not just the billionaires and the millionaires, the 1 percent. The 99 percent, which make up America, should be in charge of America, and we’re not at this point.

PROTESTERS: Drain the swamp! Drain the swamp!

JONATHAN WESTIN: We’re launching this encampment today. We’re going to be staying, you know, sleeping in sleeping bags, you know, in January in New York, which is not pleasant, to continue to send this message to the administration, but also the broader public that even supported him, because they were taken in—they were taken as frauds.

PROTESTERS: We ain’t gonna take it anymore!

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