The People’s Convoy, which has raised nearly $1 million in donations, flooded a New Mexico highway Friday as the scores of truckers protesting COVID-19 mask and vaccine mandates entered day three of their cross-country trip to Washington, D.C.
A photograph taken by convoy leader Mike Landis shows the group, comprised of approximately two dozen semi-trucks and about 100 other vehicles, traveling eastbound on I-40, about 15 miles west Albuquerque near the Route 66 Casino, in a motorcade that the convoy said spans eight miles.
The People’s Convoy, inspired by Canada’s Freedom Convoy protest, raised more than $855,000 in monetary donations as of Friday, according to the protest’s website – nearly double the amount it reported Thursday. Vendors along the route have also donated gas, food and other essentials to the cavalcade.
The convoy started its 11-day trek from California to the nation’s capital on Wednesday and, despite facing a weather delay Thursday, is still expected to arrive in D.C. on March 5, where it will be joined by around 25 other truck cavalcades.
The truckers have called on President Joe Biden to end the National Emergency, which was enacted at the start of the pandemic in 2020 and was extended again last week. The group, arguing that the threat posed by the coronavirus has now receded, also seeks an end to ‘unconstitutional’ vaccine and mask requirements.
However, nearly every state in America has either lifted or relaxed indoor mask mandates, or has set a date to do so in the near future. The lone holdout is Hawaii, the island state that has had the strictest mandates of anywhere in the country throughout the pandemic. Additionally, only 19 states currently have vaccine mandates in effect – however the mandates do not apply to all individuals and their requirements vary by state.
Although the California-based People’s Convoy will not make it to D.C. in time for Biden’s annual State of the Union address on Tuesday, an eight-vehicle caravan – featuring one semi, four pick-up trucks, two sedans and an SUV – traveling from Pennsylvania will. The Pentagon has deployed 700 members of the National Guard to the capital city ahead of the convoys’ arrival.