The festive lights and cacophony of drums and whistles coming from the intersection of Main Street and State Highway 20 on Tuesday night might’ve seemed like an unusual holiday display from afar.
The “impeachment eve” event in Coupeville, however, was a display of political frustration rather than yuletide celebration.
Approximately 100 people gathered the night before the House’s debate on whether to approve articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump.
“We’re here to say that’s exactly what we want to happen,” organizer Dawna Nolan said.
The event joined more than 600 other ones like it around the country. As a collection, they rallies were dubbed the “Nobody is Above the Law Network.” A simultaneous one was held in Langley on South Whidbey as well.
The U.S. House of Representatives voted 230-197 to impeach the president for using his position of power to solicit Ukraine for political gain and 229-198 for obstructing Congress in his refusal to allow staff to testify during impeachment hearings.
Republicans have argued the process has been unfair, and Trump referred to it as a “hoax,” according to the New York Times.
In Coupeville, the rally gave those in favor of Trump’s removal from office an outlet and way to connect with others who feel the same way, Nolan said.
“The people who are here are upset and they’re angry and they’re frustrated,” she said.
The crowd withstood a cold breeze and gathered on the pedestrian walkway above the Highway with lighted signs that spelled “impeach now.”
Along the road, people blew whistles and beat drums and pots and pans as members of the “whistleblower orchestra.”
Oak Harbor resident Tina Dykema said she attended because, as an advocate for veterans and a former service member herself, she wanted to show up on behalf of veteran issues in addition to the impeachment charges. She’s frustrated with how the administration has handled the Veteran’s Administration as well as the president’s move to members of the military who had been convicted of war crimes.
The gathering was met by honks and hollers from cars that passed by, many of which were seemed supportive.
“I think a lot of people feel this way,” Nolan said.