[Ed. – Count ’em, at the link. I come up with 10. You can donate to help the Sheriff’s Posse fund their trip here.]
While hundreds of people dined inside the Elks Lodge in Merced to raise money for the Merced County Sheriff’s Posse’s trip to the presidential inauguration later this month, protesters braved the rain outside on Sunday to denounce the trip and the tax dollars that could be used on it.
The 14 horses in the posse already are being moved across the country, according to their handlers, for the Jan. 20 ceremony when President-elect Donald Trump officially takes over.
The Sheriff’s Office had raised about $30,000 of the total goal of about $80,000 before Sunday’s benefit, according to Sheriff Vern Warnke. The group intends to go regardless of how much is raised, even if they have to pay out of pocket, he said.
“We’re the only agency from this state going to this parade,” he said on Sunday. “I’m very honored to be part of this elite group of folks and represent the good people of Merced County.”
But, that’s the rub, according to the protesters standing under umbrellas and holding signs that carried messages such as “Keep the ponies away from the phony.”
“We don’t think the Sheriff’s Posse represents Merced County very well,” protester Molly Carolan said.