Several groups seek protest permits at Dem Convention, as parallels drawn to violent 1968 confab

At least eight advocacy groups have filed permit applications to demonstrate in the vicinity of the Democratic National Convention in Chicago in August, while some organizations have sued the city for access to protest.

As unrest within the Democratic Party leads to conjecture of a situation similar to the infamous 1968 convention in the Windy City, Chicago agencies have remained largely tight-lipped about who has applied for permits and will be able to demonstrate.

Fox News Digital reached out to three city agencies in charge of permitting, the Parks District, Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the city Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.

A representative for CDOT said that, under municipal code, permits are reviewed by multiple departments to screen for potential conflicts, safety issues and availability of necessary city resources.

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“When a permit is denied, the applicant is given an alternative route that allows the parade to proceed while accounting for police resources, security, safety, and other additional factors. Each application that is submitted is evaluated based on the specific details of the proposed routes and any events happening concurrently in the city,” the representative said.

The representative said the city of Chicago has no comment on specific permits or applicants for the convention, citing ongoing litigation.

CDOT also was the only agency to respond thus far to Freedom of Information Act requests from the city’s NBC affiliate seeking similar information, according to the outlet.

Groups that applied for CDOT permits included the Israeli American Council, Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, U.S. Palestinian Community Network and the Students for a Democratic Society at University of Illinois-Chicago, according to WMAQ’s findings.

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Without specifying further, the outlet reported that “objection” was written on some of the applications.

Fox News Digital reached out to several of the applicant organizations but did not receive responses by press time.

In May, nine organizations joined the ACLU in suing the city over a permit denial relating to abortion rights and LGBTQ issues, according to CBS News.

At the time, CDOT said the protest would cause substantial and unnecessary traffic disruptions outside the bounds of what police and the city can handle.

A member of Bodies Outside of Unjust Laws – one of the groups cited in applications obtained by WMAQ – told CBS that the city’s response was reminiscent of that of then-Mayor Richard J. Daley in 1968.

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Chicago law enforcement, however, has sought to reassure the public that a repeat of then-Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey’s nomination being marred by the so-called “Battle of Michigan Avenue” will be prevented.

“This will not be 1968,” Chicago Police Superintendent Larry Snelling said in June. “[O]ur officers are being trained in the best way possible to respond to any level of civil unrest.”

Mayor Brandon Johnson harked back to his history of community organizing and has highlighted the importance of civil protest.

Johnson said his vision for the DNC is to have a “safe, energetic and vibrant convention.”

“I’m confident that we will be able to deliver that,” he said in public remarks. “As far as applications are concerned, there are parameters in which we are working … that individuals who wish to demonstrate – we’re asking those individuals work within those parameters.”

Fox News Digital’s Elizabeth Heckman contributed to this report.