Eight house democrats were arrested on Tuesday after they blocked a main roadway near the Capitol. The Democrats were among 200 people involved in the road blockage.
Protestors were attempting to push Republicans to hold a vote on a stalled immigration reform bill.
At the time of arrest police would not reveal the identity of the arrested house democrats. However, the Center for Community Change and The Associated Press were on hand and recognized the men as Democratic Reps. John Lewis of Georgia, Luis Gutiérrez of Illinois, Raúl Grijalva of Arizona, Keith Ellison of Minnesota, Joseph Crowley of New York, Charles Rangel of New York, Al Green of Texas, and Jan Schakowsky of Illinois.
The democrats were joined by various organizations including the United Farm Workers and Farmworker Justice. Members from those organizations were also arrested.
Protesters taken into police custody were charged with “crowding, obstructing and incommoding.” Those charges were issued under District of Columbia laws.
The arrests began at 4pm EDT and continued for two hours.
The rally began at the National Mall and one hour later protesters flooded the streets and took to the west lawn of the Capitol. Protestors surrounded a tour bus and blocked traffic. When police asked the protesters to exit the street many refused.
The House Democrats arrested during the rally were joining in with 160 other rallies for immigration reform which were being held all throughout the country on Saturday. The Dems introduced their own immigration bill last week. The new bill is based on bipartisan legislation for the Senate and one approved by the House Homeland Security Committee.
Several Republicans in support of the bipartisan bill were also in attendance, although they were not arrested. Those Republican supporters include Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.), Reps. David Valadao (R-Calif.), Jeff Denham (R-Calif.) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.). Those Republican supporters appeared on stage but did not participate in the rally.