Kremlin Annex is a weekly protest group that gathers on the north side of the White House to protest President Donald Trump. Over time the protests have gone from alleging conspiracy between President Trump and the Russian Federation to a demonstration activity for general left-of-center issues. Kremlin Annex continues to hold protests at the White House despite dwindling numbers over 2019.
Kremlin Annex is a project of Party Majority PAC, a political committee created by former Hillary Clinton independent expenditure ally Adam Parkhomenko.
White House Demonstrations
The Kremlin Annex is operated and funded by Party Majority PAC, created by former Hillary Clinton independent expenditure ally Adam Parkhomenko in 2017. The PAC funds the sound equipment and security for major guests and estimates that weekly costs for the protests range from $4,000 to $5,000. In addition to protests against President Trump, Kremlin Annex has staged protests against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh and the government’s response to Hurricane Maria. One protester described President Trump’s actions as “literally reminds me of a slowly-rolling Soviet Union coming to the United States.” 1 The Kremlin Annex protests have raised $100,000 through 4,000 activists. 2
Kremlin Annex protests started after President Trump spoke with Russian despot Vladimir Putin at a summit meeting in Helsinki, Finland. One of the first protests orchestrated by Kremlin Annex included speakers Michael Avenatti, Alyssa Milano, and U.S. Representative Joaquin Castro (D-TX). 3
After 90 days of activities, Kremlin Annex protests included Trump “baby balloons” and a four-foot cardboard cutout of President Trump and Vladimir Putin. Comedian Kathy Griffin was part of the protest and was also joined by an 18-person mariachi band playing protest songs against President Trump. 4
In August of 2018, Rosie O’Donnell and Javier Munoz also joined the Kremlin Annex protests. That same month, the National Park Service required that the protests move from the sidewalk in front of the White House to a portion back from the White House. 5 Rosie O’Donnell appeared at Kremlin Annex with 55 Broadway musical performers to sing “musical numbers from Les Miserables and The Sound of Music.”
After 13 months of protesting the Kremlin Annex, five activists were present at the White House. After almost a year of protests, the activists have resorted to “beating drums and cymbals, blaring a trumpet and horn, and shouting ‘liar’ and ‘traitor’ at the top of their amplified voices.” During that same period, the Kremlin Annex protests began providing a platform for “furloughed workers and any other impacted folks who want to speak out.” 6
Adam Parkhomenko, a prominent Hillary Clinton ally, started the Kremlin Annex protest project. In 2013, Mr. Parkhomenko created the Ready for Hillary PAC and is described as a “Clintonian” despite not being in Clinton’s inner circle. Under Parkhomenko’s direction, Ready for Hillary PAC raised $4 million in its first year. 7
In 2016, Mr. Parkhomenko mocked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) after he slipped on some stairs despite McConnell having suffered from polio as a child. Parkhomenko did not back down from his statements and used his criticism to highlight how McConnell allegedly was trying to “take away people’s healthcare.” 8
In October of 2018, Mr. Parkhomenko reportedly acted as a liaison between Democratic National Committee members and controversial activist lawyer Michael Avenatti who at the time was potentially running for President in 2020. Mr. Parkhomenko endorsed Michael Avenatti: “he’s absolutely the person I’m supporting in the 2020 primary, should he decide to run.” 9 In 2019, the federal government charged Avenatti with various offenses, including attempting to extort $20 million from Nike10 and embezzling money from a high-profile client. 11
- Delgadillo, Natalie. “Protesters Have Been Throwing An Anti-Trump Party Outside The White House For 86 Nights And Counting.” DCist. WAMU 88.5 – American University Radio, October 28, 2018. https://dcist.com/story/18/10/10/this-white-house-protest-is-the-soc/.
- Silva, Chantal Da. “Anti-Trump White House Protests Show No Signs of Stopping as They near Two-Week Mark.” Newsweek. Newsweek, August 3, 2018. https://www.newsweek.com/anti-trump-white-house-protests-near-two-week-mark-organizers-raise-more-100k-1044975.
- Moyer, Justin Wm. “Mixing Protest and Party, Nightly ‘Kremlin Annex’ Rally Outside the White House Reaches Its Third Week.” The Washington Post. WP Company, August 3, 2018. https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/mixing-protest-and-party-nightly-kremlin-annex-rally-outside-the-white-house-reaches-its-third-week/2018/08/02/ffefec9a-94dc-11e8-86ab-42da8f0b33ea_story.html.
- Delgadillo, Natalie. “Meet The Protesters Who Have Spent Nearly 90 Days Throwing An Anti-Trump Party Outside The White House.” WAMU. WAMU 88.5 – American University Radio, October 10, 2018. https://wamu.org/story/18/10/10/meet-protesters-spent-nearly-90-days-throwing-anti-trump-party-outside-white-house/.
- Bunch, Will. “Trump Is Clamping down on White House Protest. Be Very Afraid of What Comes next: Will Bunch.” https://www.inquirer.com. The Philadelphia Inquirer, October 14, 2018. https://www.inquirer.com/philly/columnists/will_bunch/trump-rosie-odonnell-aclu-national-park-service-20181014.html.
- Shepherd, Brittany. “Shutdown Protest Planned Outside the White House Tuesday Evening: Washingtonian (DC).” Washingtonian, January 9, 2019. https://www.washingtonian.com/2019/01/08/shutdown-protest-planned-outside-the-white-house-tuesday-evening/.
- Terris, Ben. “Meet the Clinton Staffer Who Has Devoted His Life to Her Cause. Will It Be Worth It?” The Washington Post. WP Company, January 28, 2016. https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/meet-the-clinton-staffer-who-has-devoted-his-life-to-her-cause-will-it-be-worth-it/2016/01/28/466d39fa-c12e-11e5-bcda-62a36b394160_story.html.
- Steinbuch, Yaron. “Former Clinton Aide Doesn’t Care about Mocking Mitch McConnell’s Disability.” New York Post. New York Post, April 5, 2019. https://nypost.com/2019/04/05/former-clinton-aide-doesnt-care-about-mocking-mitch-mcconnells-disability/.
- Korecki, Natasha, Caitlin Emma, Natasha Korecki, and Rodriguez. “Avenatti Quietly Builds 2020 Machine.” POLITICO, October 29, 2018. https://www.politico.com/story/2018/10/29/michael-avenatti-2020-election-campaign-944994.
- Jones, Sarah. “Michael Avenatti Flew Too Close to the Sun, Now Faces Federal Charges.” Intelligencer. Intelligencer, March 25, 2019. http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/03/michael-avenatti-federal-charges.html.
- Orden, Erica. “Michael Avenatti Charged with Stealing $300,000 from Former Client Stormy Daniels.” CNN. Cable News Network, May 23, 2019. https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/22/politics/michael-avenatti-stormy-daniels-indictment/index.html.