Women's March on Washington Had More People Than Trump's Inauguration
Facts matter, people. Don’t ever forget that. Yesterday, Americans around the country and people around the globe showed their disdain for newly minted President Donald Trump by protesting him as a part of the Women’s March on Washington. Despite claims by White House press secretary Sean Spicer that Trump’s inauguration was the largest one period — crowd scientists and publications like The Washington Post say that the march had three times more people in attendance, with nearly half a million marchers inside the nation’s capital.
Marcel Altenburg and Keith Still from the Manchester Metropolitan University analyzed photographs and videos taken at the National Mall and estimated that approximately 160,000 attended Trump’s big day and at least 470,000 people marched the following day on Jan. 21. The New York Times enlisted their own scientists who compared images on peak points on both days, which resulted in that infamous photo where the Mall appears to be 2/3 empty, with crowds pressed toward the front of the Mall. In contrast, the Women’s March protest nearly filled the entire Mall save for some space toward the back of the area.
The Washington Post noted that organizers originally sought a permit for 200,000 people, but by their own estimates, as many as half a million people participated. For those facts and figures, Trump and his press secretary falsely claimed the numbers at one million to one-and-a-half-million in attendance for the inauguration at both CIA headquarters and at a press conference. “This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period,” Spicer said during the press briefing. The press secretary also claimed that photos had been “intentionally framed” so as to downplay Trump’s crowd, another statement that is severely untrue.
So, what does one do when holes are being poked in your false story? Double-down on the ignorance in Trump’s case. In a tweet (yes, a tweet) barrage from the president, he focused on television ratings in an attempt to downplay just how many people actually came to Washington, D.C. to witness the peaceful transfer of power. “31 million people watched the inauguration, 11 million more than the very good ratings from four years ago,” he wrote. To back up those numbers, Nielsen ratings do show that Obama had a viewership of 20.6 million in 2013 and Trump’s ranked fifth highest in total viewers behind Reagan in 1982, Obama in 2009, Jimmy Carter in 1977 and Richard Nixon in 1973.
With no official count released yet about the number of marchers internationally, the Washington Post is estimating that more than one million people gathered in Los Angeles, Melbourne, Australia and Juneau, Alaska in about 673 marches that were held worldwide.