[UPDATE BELOW] Police arrested three women on the Manhattan Bridge this morning as they attempted to hang a large banner with the word "VOTE" on it.
According to the NYPD, around 6:15 a.m. officers observed a group of men and women walking on the north side bicycle path and subsequently attempting to hang a banner. Police from the 5th precinct responded and it appears they intervened before the banner was fully unfurled.
Appears to be some sort of banner hanging off the Manhattan Bridge. Being removed by NYPD. pic.twitter.com/39jd5kB1CM
— M_Chung (@M_Chung) November 5, 2018
Two women in their mid-30s and one woman in her mid-20s have been taken into custody at the 5th Precinct stationhouse. Charges are pending, and the NYPD says the investigation is ongoing.
The NYPD spokesperson could not confirm if there were other words on the banner other than the word "VOTE."
As you may have heard, the midterm elections are tomorrow, Tuesday November 6th; in NYC polls open at 6 a.m. and stay open until 9 p.m. Check out the Gothamist / WNYC voter guide here for information on where to vote and what's on your ballot.
UPDATE 8:55 a.m.: A progressive political group called the Flo Kennedy Society has claimed responsibility for the banner drop. In a statement, the group said the banner carried the "simple but strong message against a bright pink background: VOTE." From the email announcing the action:
“During the past two years, our communities have been attacked from every angle. From the mainstreaming of hate to the lies and destructive policies of a disturbed, amoral administration, our nation has been victimized by the steady degradation of all we hold dear as a country.
"Attacks on our bodies, the ripping away of protections for vulnerable groups, the incarceration of migrant children, the murders committed by people emboldened by the president’s hateful rhetoric—all of these things have contributed to the slow chipping away of our moral compass as a country.
"But we have not stood silent. We have refused to stop fighting. We have marched in the streets, been shackled at protests, raised our voices in the halls of power, and organized our sisters and brothers of the resistance around us.
"We know you are exhausted. We know you feel defeated. But we implore you: give your last ounce of energy in service to your nation and show up at the polls this Tuesday.”
Florynce Kennedy was an influential feminist, lawyer and civil rights activist who died in 2000 at age 84. According to her NY Times obituary, Kennedy was "one of the first black women to graduate from Columbia Law School, where she was admitted after threatening a discrimination suit. She fought in the courts and on the streets for abortion rights, represented Black Panthers, was a founding member of the National Women's Political Caucus and led a mass urination by women protesting a lack of women's restrooms at Harvard."