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HIV/AIDS Protesters Target Cantor’s Cannon Office

Bill Clark/Roll Call

Correction Appended

Capitol Police arrested a dozen protesters in front of Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s Washington, D.C., Congressional office Monday morning.

The protesters were demonstrating House GOP-proposed cuts to HIV/AIDS prevention programs and staked out the Virginia Republican’s office on the third floor of Cannon House Office Building shortly after 10 a.m. to make their case.

“They were yelling ‘GOP spreads HIV,’” a staffer who witnessed the scene said. “They were being perpetually noncompliant and the police had to pick them up and remove them.”

It is unclear what groups were responsible for the protest, but another staffer who witnessed the civil disobedience described the group as young, perhaps teenagers and college students.

“They were yelling for quite some time. It was very loud,” the staffer said. “It took the police a while to calm them down.”

Capitol Police charged the group with unlawful conduct and transported them to headquarters for processing.

In a February visit to Harvard University, Cantor met protests from student groups who were crying foul over the cuts to HIV/AIDS programs laid out in the 2011 full-year spending bill passed by the House in February.

The bill failed a Senate vote and will likely not become law, since Congressional leaders on Friday finalized a deal on a different package.

Correction: April 12, 2011

The article misstated where the protesters were processed. It was the Capitol Police facility at 67 K St. SW.

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